The new Center for Science and the Imagination is launching its exhibit , End of the Golden Age: Science Fiction Before and After the Atomic Bomb, with a grand opening on September 12th at 1 PM at the Noble Science and Engineering Library. This event will feature an introduction by Author Alan Dean Foster. The exhibit presents stories published during and after World War II, and examines the growing recognition within the optimistic ranks of Golden Age writers that some of our greatest scientific mysteries were not technological but cultural.
Center director ASU Assistant Professor Edward Finn and Research and Operations Coordinator Joey Eschrich join ASU Libraries’ Fred McIlvain and explore the concepts the Golden Age of Science Fiction and the fascinating exhibit. They also talk about how the Center for Science and the Imagination brings writers, artists and other creative thinkers into collaboration with scientists, engineers and technologists and serves as an exciting place to reignite humanity’s grand ambitions for innovation and discovery.
About the Golden Age of Science Fiction
During the late 1930s and early 1940s, the genre we now recognize as science fiction was born in the pages of a handful of pulp magazines. One magazine in particular, Astounding Science Fiction, and its iconoclastic editor, John W. Campbell, pushed science fiction beyond its reliance on the familiar tropes of romance and adventure pulps to define a distinctive new kind of narrative.
The crucible of World War II drove the intellectual architecture of new labs at MIT, Stanford and other institutions. The breathtaking pace of discovery led to the invention or refinement of a host of new technologies from radar to the atomic bomb. In short, it was an era when the human imagination was stretched in both terrifying and wonderful ways. This was the era of Science Fiction’s Golden Age, spanning the decade of modern humanity’s transition from technological innocence to experience.
The Golden Age of Science Fiction
Noble Science and Engineering library at ASU Tempe Campus
September 12, through October 2012
Running Time: 19:32
Ed Finn is the director of the Center for Science and the Imagination at Arizona State University, as well as an assistant professor with a joint appointment between the School of Arts, Media + Engineering and the Department of English.
Joey Eschrich is Coordinator Senior, Research and Operations for the Center for Science and the Imagination.