Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Mulisch, Harry

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(1927-2010) Dutch writer, mostly of nonfantasy. However, De toekomst van gisteren ["The Future of Yesterday"] (1972), a book-length essay explaining why HM decided not to write a projected book of that title in which Hitler Wins, shows HM's familiarity with the devices and themes of modern fantasy. Hoogste tijd (1985; trans Adrienne Dixon as Last Call 1987 UK) verges on Fabulation; its climactic chapter alludes repeatedly to Edgar Allan Poe's The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym (1838). The three long stories in Oude lucht (coll 1977; trans Adrienne Dixon in New Writing and Writers #17-#19 1980-1982) are variously fantasticated. The title story (trans as "Antique Air") ends with the protagonist passing into an Afterlife; "De Grens" ("The Boundary") is a Franz Kafka-like tale of bureaucracy overtaking a man whose wife has died on the borderline between two jurisdictions; "Symmetrie" ("Symmetry") is a meditation on the spirit of the 19th-century scientific romance. [GF]

Harry Mulisch


This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.