Hard science fiction Versus science fiction


hard science fiction

                Science fiction in our common perception is a fiction with fictional elements that in real life would be possible and are not possible yet because of knowledge that need to be acquired in that specific field of science. 

    I remember asking my father what was science fiction when I was a kid and him replying to me that it's fiction based on science but taking further some facts that science did not succeed to have happen yet or will never. 

We all agree that Science fiction is fiction inspired by science and when fictional elements do not involve science but would somehow be unconceivable in real life we have fantastic fiction.

Now when fiction respects science like, it would actually be possible one day when we have more knowledge of that science or it would be possible one day if our ethic code changes or for any other reasons then, we might have hard science fiction.

Yes, science fiction is fiction taking a scientific phenomenom and imagining it at a different level, either with more performances, either with more options and possibilities or simply with possibilities.

Science fiction writers as H.G Wells for example, had his early novels, called "scientific romances", where he invented several themes now classic in science fiction in such works as The Time Machine, The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, When the Sleeper Wakes, and The First Men in the Moon.Wells also wrote dozens of short stories and novellas, including, "The Flowering of the Strange Orchid", which helped bring the full impact of Darwin's revolutionary botanical ideas to a wider public, and was followed by many later successes such as "The Country of the Blind" (1904).
According to James E. Gunn, one of Wells's major contributions to the science fiction genre was his approach, which he referred to as his "new system of ideas". In his opinion, the author should always strive to make the story as credible as possible, even if both the writer and the reader knew certain elements are impossible, allowing the reader to accept the ideas as something that could really happen, today referred to as "the plausible impossible" and "suspension of disbelief".

While neither invisibility nor time travel was new in speculative fiction, Wells added a sense of realism to the concepts which the readers were not familiar with. He conceived the idea of using a vehicle that allows an operator to travel purposely and selectively forwards or backwards in time. The term "time machine", coined by Wells, is now almost universally used to refer to such a vehicle.He explained that while writing The Time Machine, he realized that "the more impossible the story I had to tell, the more ordinary must be the setting, and the circumstances in which I now set the Time Traveller were all that I could imagine of solid upper-class comforts." In "Wells's Law", a science fiction story should contain only a single extraordinary assumption. Therefore, as justifications for the impossible, he employed scientific ideas and theories. Wells's best-known statement of the "law" appears in his introduction to a collection of his works published in 1934:

As soon as the magic trick has been done the whole business of the fantasy writer is to keep everything else human and real. Touches of prosaic detail are imperative and a rigorous adherence to the hypothesis. Any extra fantasy outside the cardinal assumption immediately gives a touch of irresponsible silliness to the invention.

We can not talk about origins of science fiction without talking about Jules Verne of course.

The relationship between Verne's Voyages extraordinaires and the literary genre science fiction is a complex one. Verne, like H. G. Wells, is frequently cited as one of the founders of the genre, and his profound influence on its development is indisputable; however, many earlier writers, such as Lucian of Samosata, Voltaire, and Mary Shelley, have also been cited as creators of science fiction, an unavoidable ambiguity arising from the vague definition and history of the genre.

A primary issue at the heart of the dispute is the question of whether Verne's works count as science fiction to begin with. Maurice Renard claimed that Verne "never wrote a single sentence of scientific-marvelous".

Verne himself argued repeatedly in interviews that his novels were not meant to be read as scientific, saying "I have invented nothing". His own goal was rather to "depict the earth [and] at the same time to realize a very high ideal of beauty of style", as he pointed out in an example:

" I wrote Five Weeks in a Balloon, not as a story about ballooning, but as a story about Africa. I always was greatly interested in geography, history and travel, and I wanted to give a romantic description of Africa. Now, there was no means of taking my travellers through Africa otherwise than in a balloon, and that is why a balloon is introduced.… I may say that at the time I wrote the novel, as now, I had no faith in the possibility of ever steering balloons…"

Closely related to Verne's science-fiction reputation is the often-repeated claim that he is a "prophet" of scientific progress, and that many of his novels involve elements of technology that were fantastic for his day but later became commonplace. These claims have a long history, especially in America, but the modern scholarly consensus is that such claims of prophecy are heavily exaggerated. In a 1961 article critical of Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas' scientific accuracy, Theodore L. Thomas speculated that Verne's storytelling skill and readers misremembering a book they read as children caused people to "remember things from it that are not there. The impression that the novel contains valid scientific prediction seems to grow as the years roll by".As with science fiction, Verne himself flatly denied that he was a futuristic prophet, saying that any connection between scientific developments and his work was "mere coincidence" and attributing his indisputable scientific accuracy to his extensive research: "even before I began writing stories, I always took numerous notes out of every book, newspaper, magazine, or scientific report that I came across.

H.G Wells and Jules Verne willing to have their stories as credible as possible brings me to the point I want to make today that science fiction is a very wide genre.

Writers willing to make their stories as credible as possible, even if both the writer and the reader knew certain elements are impossible, allowing the reader to accept the ideas as something that could really happen, one day maybe we are closer to hard science-fiction.

I always thought Michael Crichton was one of the precursors of hard science fiction as everything he describes is actually already possible with science today but maybe not for ethical reasons.

I also chose to illustrate "Resident Evil" in this article as it is the first "zombie" franchise where zombie cases are a consequence of a virus manipulation. Before that if we look back at the zombie universe, we find its origins in Voodoo culture and in Romero's movies who popularized the genre deads coming out of their tombs links the fictional event to Bible beliefs so it stays spiritual like for the voodoo origins or "zombie". Nothing to do with science. And yet Resident Evil akes it "science fiction".
In both Michael Crichtojn Jurrassic Park and Resident Evil the science field is biology. And even if when we talk about science fiction our common perception of the genre makes us think about space and spaceships or about time travel and links the science of the science fiction to quantum physics or astrophysics, science fiction can also be about biology.

There are a number of ancient or early modern texts including many epics and poems that contain fantastical or "science-fictional" elements, yet were written before the emergence of science fiction as a distinct genre. These texts often include elements such as a fantastical voyage to the moon or the use of imagined advanced technology.

Although fantastical elements and imagery exist in stories such as Ovid's Metamorphoses (8 AD), the Old English epic heroic poem Beowulf (8th–11th centuries AD), and the Middle German epic poem Nibelungenlied (c. 1230), their relative lack of references to science or technology puts them closer to fantasy rather than science fiction.

One of the earliest and most commonly-cited texts for those looking for early precursors to science fiction is the ancient Mesopotamian Epic of Gilgamesh, with the earliest text versions identified as being from about 2000 BCE. American science fiction author Lester del Rey was one such supporter of using Gilgamesh as an origin point, arguing that "science fiction is precisely as old as the first recorded fiction. That is The Epic of Gilgamesh."

French science fiction writer Pierre Versins also argued that Gilgamesh was the first science fiction work due to its treatment of human reason and the quest for immortality. In addition, Gilgamesh features a flood scene that in some ways resembles a work of apocalyptic science fiction. However, the lack of explicit science or technology in the work has led some to argue that it is better categorized as fantastic literature.

We can conclude that science fiction genre is about fictional elements based on science if there is no science then it is categorized as fantastic literature and that the most realistic and plausible facts and events are in the fiction, the more it makes it a hard science-fiction genre rather than just science fiction. On a scale you'd then have the closest it gets to science it makes it hard science-fiction and the furthest it is to science it makes it fantastic literature and not science fiction like it is sometimes labeled or those two genres SF Fantastic are often merged into that one genre SF-Fantastics for absolutely no reason and more mistakenly than accurately.


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