Center for Values in Medicine, Science and Technology Lecture Series: Kim Stanley Robinson

Thursday, May 18, 2017, 7:00 p.m.
Venue: Edith O'Donnell Arts & Technology Building (ATC)
Season: 2016-2017

Center for Values in Medicine, Science and Technology Lecture Series: The Power of Science Fiction Science Fiction Is the Realism of Our Time About the Lecture: Names for the historical period we are living in include postmodernity, globalism, late capitalism, the Washington consensus, neoliberalism, the Anthropocene, and the sixth great mass extinction event. All these names rightly emphasize global economic and ecological factors, and most attempt to describe the growing dangerous impact of humanity on our only possible biophysical support system, planet Earth. They are in effect compact science fiction stories, as they attempt to include future developments in their depictions of the present, in order to capture the sense of an accelerated pace of history caused by rapid technological changes. History is now a science fiction story we are writing together. That being the case, it is a useful exercise to discuss what science fiction is, and how it works. About the Speaker: Kim Stanley Robinson is an American science fiction writer. He is the author of more than twenty books, including the international bestselling Mars trilogy, and most recently Aurora, Shaman, Green Earth, and 2312, which was a New York Times bestseller nominated for all seven of the major science fiction awards — a first for any book. He was sent to the Antarctic by the U.S. National Science Foundation's Antarctic artists program in 1995, and returned in their Antarctic journalists program in 2016. In 2008, he was named a “Hero of the Environment” by Time magazine, and he works with the Sierra Nevada Research Institute, the Clarion Writers' Workshop, and UC San Diego’s Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination. His work has been translated into 25 languages, and won a dozen awards in five countries, including the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy Award. In 2016 he was given the Heinlein Award for lifetime achievement in science fiction, and asteroid 72432 was named “Kimrobinson.”
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