Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Andersonian Myths

Tolteca's fight with the mountain apes on Gwydion in (maybe) 3900 A.D. recalled the Time Traveler's fights with the Morlocks in the Thames Valley in 802,701 A.D., which then led to a sequence of comparisons between:

Wells' Time Traveler;
two versions of the Doctor;
Poul Anderson's diverse time travelers.

These might be "true myths," in Olaf Stapledon's sense of that phrase:

Wells' 802,701 A.D., followed by his Further Vision;

a visit to the asteroidal remnants of Earth in the Doctor's TARDIS;

interstellar civilizations where the Time Patrol operates openly and, later, the Danellian Era;

the Star Masters period in There Will Be Time;

the time wardens period in The Corridors Of Time;

the Second Empire and the later "gods" in "Flight to Forever";

the later civilizations in several spiral arms in the Technic History;

the multi-species civilization at the Galactic Center in "The Chapter Ends";

post-organic intelligences spreading through and beyond the galaxy in Genesis;

downloaded consciousnesses endlessly reembodied on terraformed planets in the Harvest of Stars tetralogy;

Tau Zero.

That is a considerable number of myths from Poul Anderson.

Addendum: See also the conclusions of War Of The Gods and Starfarers here and here.

4 comments:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Many Stapledonian myths indeed! All of them worth reading and rereading and pondering over. And these touch on only Anderson's hard SF, not his fantasies--which slides over into pure quill pen myths. Such as Anderson's use of both Scandinavian and Carolingian legends.

Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
Like the renewed friendship between Odin and Njord at the end of WAR OF THE GODS.
Paul.

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
I also left out the interstellar civilization with STL travel but transtemporal communication projected at the end of STARFARERS.
Paul.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Good choices! I've also thought of how Poul Anderson reconstructed the legends about the Danish King Hrolf in HROLF KRAKI'S SAGA.

Sean