Back to Days of Futures Past

    On Thursday October 4th, 2018, I was given opportunity  to look inside of City Tech Science Fiction Collection. I was intrigued when Professor Belli told the class that an anonymous donor donated 600 linear feet of science fiction books and magazines. I was surprised that all the books were able to fit in the tiny room, especially that there are old items and documents that in the archive room. When I first went in the archive room , which is located  on the fifth floor of the library, it was like going back in time as I step through the door which I thought as portal . In the back of the library is where all the science fiction collection is held . Issues that dated back from 1950 , all the way up  to 2010. When the tour of the science fiction archive came to the end , I had a reflection on what I saw.

     What I was first fascinated by was  the thickennes and the age of the books. The books were thin and hard to take out because there was some much books on one shelf, especially that we had to be careful of taking them out because some of them were so old.  The collection takes up about a  third of the library’s archive in the back. As I was looking at the shelves , I felt like was walking amongst  different eras of times when these books were published. In addition,  when picking a book to skim through I would imagine what the book will be about like whens the title reads for example  ” Zorg and Space-Man”.  Also, there would be some amazing artwork on the front cover that would show some sort of  utopia-technologically advanced cities or ships in outer space with the beautiful cosmos in the background. Some books I looked through were just articles and reviews of other science fiction books and magazine. Some books looked plain , thin, and banal, while some looked was interesting. Some books were so old that they were fragile and we weren’t even able to touch it .  There are so many books and magazines in the archive , that it surprised me that the authors had so many ideas to write their fictional stories , especially that they lived in a primitive time when technology wasn’t advanced . These authors was thinking way beyond their time,  giving birth to the possibility of  “what if this happened”. In addition, the books were so thin that the authors crammed interesting  stories in these small books, which these books became widely popular literature. 

Furthermore, there was a magazine that I was flipping through that caught eye, which is called “Amazing Stories — Vol. 66, No.4 “. I had looked up the publishing date , which was August 1991. The first thing that caught my eye was the art cover on the front which shows two technologically advanced cities in outer space , with planets ,supposedly, floating between them. In addition, it shows the dark and colorful colors of the cosmos in the background. When I had flipped through the pages , there were short science fiction stories ( which looked really long) , and there were some commentaries of science fiction stories as well. In addition , they had a few artworks in the book . What really was interesting that it took six authors to  write  this magazine. And there names are Michael Sawnwick, Robert Sliverberg, Tim Sullivan, Geroge Zebrowski, R. Garcia Y Robertson , and Rob Chilson. This magazine was also in pristine condition , yet it is 27 years old, like no one never touched it.

On the whole, if I had the time to read any read any book or magazine from that archive it would take me back in the past to the time it was published , but would send me to a future of possibilities that could have involved advanced technology, aliens, cybernetic organism, or something that is just out of this world. 

 

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