(1946- ) US academic, editor and writer who began publishing critical work in the field of the Fantastic with The Fantastic in Literature (1976), which presents his most sustained modelling thoughts on the structure of a genre like Fantasy. His basic premise is that a work that is fantastic manifests a clear reversal of the "ground rules" of reality, in order that a new set of ground rules can be established for – and within – the work in question. This new set of rules sets up a world which, though "dis-expected", remains internally consistent once understood.
other works: by ESR include Science Fiction: History, Science, Vision (1977) with Robert Scholes (1929-2016) and Arthur C. Clarke (1979 chap; rev 1980). He has edited two anthologies collecting sf and fantasy, Fantastic Worlds: Myths, Tales & Stories (anth 1979) and Science Fiction: A Historical Anthology (anth 1983), plus a number of critical anthologies, many of them with George E Slusser (1939-2014) and most assembling selected papers from the annual Eaton Conference: Bridges to Fantasy (anth 1982) with Slusser; The End of the World (anth 1983) with Martin H Greenberg and Joseph D Olander (1939- ), Co-Ordinates: Placing Science Fiction and Fantasy (anth 1983) with Slusser and Scholes, No Place Else: Explorations in Utopian and Dystopian Fiction (anth 1983) with Greenberg and Olander; Shadows of the Magic Lamp: Fantasy and Science Fiction in Film (anth 1985) with Slusser, Hard Science Fiction (anth 1986) with Slusser, Storm Warnings: Science Fiction Confronts the Future (anth 1987) with Slusser and Colin Greenland, Intersections: Fantasy and Science Fiction (anth 1987) with Slusser, Aliens: The Anthropology of Science Fiction (anth 1987) with Slusser, Mindscapes: The Geographies of Imagined Worlds (anth 1989) with Slusser; Styles of Creation: Aesthetic Technique and the Creation of Fictional Worlds (anth 1992) with Slusser and Fights of Fancy: Armed Conflict in Science Fiction and Fantasy (anth 1993) with Slusser. [JC]
Eric Stanley Rabkin