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   Longer Views, by Samuel R. Delany  
  Nonfiction, first publication in November 1996
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       Additional Information  
      While most literary critics can take a text apart, few can create them as expertly. Samuel R. Delany is a noteworthy exception. Delany is the author of great science fiction works like the novel The Mad Man and the short stories in Tales of Neveryon. He is also an able assessor of literary theory and a cognoscente of the science fiction genre. Longer Views is a collection of essays in literary criticism, ranging from a close reading of Donna Haraway's "Manifesto for Cyborgs," in which he is critical of the feminist author's naively positive take on technology, to a fascinating consideration of the artistic styles of Richard Wagner and Antonin Artaud. Of particular interest to cybernauts and science fiction fans alike is Delaney's consideration of how readers and viewers participate in the creation of the background conditions for fictitious fantasy worlds and the role a reader or viewer plays in completing an artistic work of science fiction. Delany's criticism is well-crafted and never flags or grows tiresome.


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