Friday, 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE PARALLEL UNIVERSE
Chair: Bud Ebote, Georgia Tech.
Robert J. Ewald, Findlay College,
Worlds of Clifford Simak."
The motif of alternate worlds is predominant in
many of the novels and short stories of Clifford
Simak. These alternate worlds may be friendly or
inimical. Simak uses alternate worlds as a device
to explain time travel and to account for the
future progress of mankind. The motif of alternate
worlds has also provided Simak with a stylistic
device to allow his unique blending of science
fiction and fantasy genres in most of his works
since 1965 (although his use of parallel universes
extends back to the forties and the City series in
Melissa E. Barth, Appalachian State University, North
Carolina. "Seeing Parallels Where None Exist:
Breaking Fantasy's Magical Spell."
One species of parallel universe is the world of
fantasy; and the establishment of an illusion of
reality in that universe involves ground rules
similar to those of science fiction parallel
universes, but different in many ways from those
of mainstream fiction (or even other science fiction). This paper inspects the principles involved
in the "realism" of fantasy, using C.L. Moore's
story "Jirel Meets Magic" as example.
William M. Schuyler, University of Louisville.
My paper begins with a discussion of the way
philosophers have begun to talk about possible
worlds and how this approach has been used to deal
with the problem of truth in fiction: a statement
about what happens in a fiction which is not true
in our world may be said to be true if it is true
in some suitable possible world. However, a case
of special interest for fantasy and science fiction leads to difficult problems.
FRIDAY, MARCH 25
2-3:30 P. 11.
ITALIAN SCIENCE FICTION
Chair: Gaetano Cipolla, St. John's University, New
Mario Mignone, SUNY at Stony Brook. "Dino Buzzati and
Modern Italian Science Fiction."
The multitude of science fiction books, conferences, and magazines to be found in Italy today
testifies that Italian fantascienza is very much
alive. Some writers have achieved literary distinction solely as writers of science fiction;
others have taken the path of science fiction to
strengthen their field of expression. In Larger
Than Life, Buzzati's only true science fiction
novel and one of the best in Italy, while retaining the best qualities of his earlier works — the
human concerns, the sense of mystery and the unknown — the author probes the theme of the
stifling effects of technology on contemporary
society and shows how destructive science and
technology can be when capriciously applied.
Gaetano Cipolla, St. John's University, New York.
"Jung In Venice: Gasparini's "La Donna Immortale."
Italian science fiction writers no longer write
about giant insects infesting Texas: they have
come home! Gasparini's tale is set in Venice.
They have also projected their search inwardly,
rather than to the stars, and there they find a
reality older than time: the great mother. This
paper will analyze the Jungian elements present in
THE FANTASTIC IN THE WORKS OF EDGAR ALLAN POE I
Chair: Richard Kopley, Illinois State University.
Jean Lorrah, Murray State University, Kentucky. "A
Progression of Horror in Four Stories by Edgar
Perverseness causes the narrators of four Poe
stories to commit seemingly incomprehensible murders. The four stories — "The Black Cat," "The
Tell-Tale Heart," "The Imp of the Perverse," and
"The Cask of Amontillado" — show a distinct progression in the narrators' attitudes from denial
to acceptance, thus leading the reader into a confrontation with the horror of his own perverseness.
Joseph Francavilla, SUNY/Buffalo. "Poe's Perversity
and the Split Narrative 'I,' or How Not To Tell A
Poe's theory of perverseness, defined in "The
Black Cat" as "the unfathomable longing of the
soul to vex itself," and further developed in "The
Imp of the Perverse," is a pervasive aesthetic
device which effects a division within the first-
person narrators in the above tales and in "The
Tell-Tale Heart." Both in the form and in the
content of these confessional stories the three
traits of perversity can be detected: intentional
circumlocution, procrastination, and self-annihilation. The narrators become torn between the
desire to be brief and to be circumlocutory, to
tell the story and not to tell the story.
Benjamin Franklin Fisher IV, The University of
Mississippi. "Fantasy Figures in Poe's Poems."
Figures, particularly female figures, abound in
Poe's verse. Often they reveal much about the
"voices" in the works when such poems are not,
strictly, narratives. "Sonnet — To Science," "To
Helen," and "To One in Paradise" may be considered
representative. In the first, ambiguities increase
when we consider ramifications of the fantasy-
creation for "Science" being feminine. Just so,
fantasy heightens in "To Helen," wherein the contemplation of tangible art work leads the speaker