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Harper, Vincent

Pseudonym of Cuban-born US Episcopal minister (later Catholic priest and still later agnostic), lecturer, author and playwright Henry Austin Adams (1861-1931), who normally wrote as H Austin Adams. His sf novel, The Mortgage on the Brain: Being the Confessions of the Late Ethelbert Craft, MD (1905), describes an electric-shock treatment which alters personality beneficially and undermines many then-conventional views of the nature of the mind and Identity. The story is a melodramatic hotchpotch, but is of interest in its reference to the ego, which is described (as in the title) as holding no more than a mortgage on its habitat, and which might indeed be so alterable that it may be deemed capable of splitting, though in good health. [JC]

see also: Psychology.

Henry Austin Adams

born Cuba: Santiago de Cuba, 1861

died Coronado, California: 1931



Entry from The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction edited by John Clute, David Langford, Peter Nicholls and Graham Sleight.
Accessed 16:35 pm on 6 December 2021.