The World of the (1939) Future


I am re-reading, for the first time in decades, A. E. van Vogt's novel, The Voyage of the Space Beagle. Although it is set in the far future, it is far more informative about the world of 1939 (its year of publication) than it is about the future.

"The future" of any period is always very much that period's future: it is an aspect of that bygone present, understood in terms of the hopes and fears of those living in it, as well as their conception of its potentialities.

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