Listing books by Gregory Benford

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Full title Last and First Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future [permalink]
Language English
Authors Olaf Stapledon (author), Gregory Benford (foreword) and Doris Lessing (afterword)
Publisher Victor Gollancz Ltd
Categories Novel and science fiction
Publication year 1999
Original publication year 1930
ISBN 978-1-85798-806-2 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 312
Images Back of Last and First Men.Spine of Last and First Men.Front of Last and First Men.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Foreword by Gregory Benford
  • Preface
  • Introduction by One of the Last Men

Chapter I: Balkan Europe

  1. The European War and AFter
  2. The Anglo-French War
  3. Europe after the Anglo-French War
  4. The Russo-German War

Chapter II: Europe's Downfall

  1. Europe and America
  2. The Origins of a Mystery
  3. Europe Murdered

Chapter III: America and China

  1. The Rivals
  2. The Conflict
  3. On an Island in the Pacific

Chapter IV: An Americanized Planet

  1. The Foundation of the First World State
  2. The Dominance of Science
  3. Material Achievement
  4. The Culture of the First World State
  5. Downfall

Chapter V: The Fall of the First Men

  1. The First Dark Age
  2. The Rise of Patagonia
  3. The Cult of Youth
  4. The Catastrophe

Chapter VI: Transition

  1. The First Men at Bay
  2. The Second Dark Age

Chapter VII: The Rise of the Second Men

  1. The Appearance of a New Species
  2. The Intercourse of Three Species
  3. The Zenith of the Second Men

Chapter VIII: The Martians

  1. The First Martian Invasion
  2. Life on Mars
  3. The Martian Mind
  4. Delusions of the Martians

Chapter IX: Earth and Mars

  1. The Second Men at Bay
  2. The Ruin of Two Worlds
  3. The Third Dark Age

Chapter X: The Third Men in the Wilderness

  1. The Third Human Species
  2. Digressions of the Third Men
  3. The Vital Art
  4. Conflicting Policies

Chapter XI: Man Remakes Himself

  1. The First of the Great Brains
  2. The Tragedy of the Fourth Men
  3. The Fifth Men
  4. The Culture of the Fifth Men

Chapter XII: The Last Terrestrials

  1. The Cult of Evanescence
  2. Exploration of Time
  3. Voyaging in Space
  4. Preparing a New World

Chapter XIII: Humanity on Venus

  1. Taking Root Again
  2. The Flying Men
  3. A Minor Astronomical Event

Chapter XIV: Neptune

  1. Bird's-Eye View
  2. Da Capo
  3. Slow Conquest

Chapter XV: The Last Men

  1. Introduction to the Last Human Species
  2. Childhood and Maturity
  3. A Racial Awakening
  4. Cosmology

Chapter XVI: The Last of Man

  1. Sentence of Death
  2. Behaviour of the Condemned
  3. Epilogue
  • Afterword by Doris Lessing
  • Time Scales
Full title Time Gate [permalink]
Language English
Authors Gregory Benford (author), Pat Murphy (author), Poul Anderson (author), Robert Sheckley (author) and Robert Silverberg (author)
Publisher Baen Publishing Enterprises
Categories Novel and science fiction
Publication year 1989
ISBN 0-671-69850-8 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 277
Synopsis

It's the future, and simulating near-perfect replicas of people in software is routine. At first it's used for entertainment, simulating historical figures from the past, but it isn't long before things get interesting...

Each chapter is written by a different author, and deals with two famous persons from the past: Enter a Soldier. Later: Enter Another is about Francisco Pizarro and Socrates, The Resurrection Machine about Cicero and Bakunin, Statesmen about Friedrich Hohenzollern and Machiavelli, The Rose and the Scalpel about Joan of Arc and Voltaire (who, without spoiling too much, have a Great Debate), and finally How I Spent My Summer Vacation is about Queen Victoria and some unknown girl (to say more would spoil).

Almost all of the book is about the interactions between the historical figured themselves, and the interplay between them and their creators.

Review

A pretty interesting read. It's not every day you get to see Socrates trick one of the Spanish Conquistadors into one of his famous dialogues! The idea of the book is interesting, but I think the book would be even better if it were written by a single author. In fact, its multiple authorship detracts from the quality, I feel, but it's nevertheless worth a read.

Images Back of Time Gate.Spine of Time Gate.Front of Time Gate.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Enter a Soldier. Later: Enter Another, Robert Silverberg
  • The Resurrection Machine, Robert Sheckley
  • Statesmen, Poul Anderson
  • The Rose and the Scalpel, Gregory Benford
  • How I Spent My Summer Vacation, Pat Murphy

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