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Cordwainer Smith

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  • Al Griffith
    Has anyone read any of Cordwainer Smith s books? I ve just finished his short story Scanners Live in Vain - now that is one very strange story. Wildly
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 27, 2002
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      Has anyone read any of Cordwainer Smith's books? I've just finished his
      short story "Scanners Live in Vain" - now that is one very strange story.
      Wildly original. I love his idea of the Great Pain of Space.

      Al
    • cladethree
      ... One very strange story is a pretty good description of most of Cordwainer Smith s work. He was a unique writer and one of my favorites. He mainly wrote
      Message 2 of 3 , Dec 28, 2002
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        --- In sciencefictionclassics@yahoogroups.com, "Al Griffith" <
        agri4042@b...> wrote:
        > Has anyone read any of Cordwainer Smith's books? I've just finished his
        > short story "Scanners Live in Vain" - now that is one very strange story.
        > Wildly original. I love his idea of the Great Pain of Space.
        >
        > Al


        "One very strange story" is a pretty good description of most of
        Cordwainer Smith's work. He was a unique writer and one of my
        favorites. He mainly wrote short-stories, most of them set in The
        Instrumentality of Mankind, the same future history that "Scanners" is
        part of. He wrote one SF novel, "Norstrilia", which is very good, but
        it's better to start with the short stories. I don't know if "The Best
        of Cordwainer Smith" is still available, if so, that's a great one. And
        NESFA Press has published a one-volume edition, "The Rediscovery of
        Man", containing all of his stories.
        There are more stories dealing with the Great Pain of Space, most
        notably "Drunkboat" and "The Game of Rat and Dragon". Some of my other
        favorites are 'Alpha-Ralpha Boulevard", "The Lady Who Sailed the Soul",
        and "The Ballad of Lost C'Mell".
        He was also a really interesting guy, his real name was Paul Myron
        Anthony Linebarger. Born in China, he was the god-son of Sun Yat-Sen, a
        political science professor, and wrote the standard text on
        psychological warfare.
        Hope you can find his books. If you're looking for more
        information, his daughter has a good website devoted to his work,
        http://www.cordwainer-smith.com/

        gj
      • kevver1
        I believe there was some drug influence that may have affected his stories. A Planet Named Shayol is by far the strangest story I ve ever read. It s also
        Message 3 of 3 , Dec 31, 2002
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          I believe there was some drug influence that may have affected his stories.
          "A Planet Named Shayol" is by far the strangest story I've ever read. It's also somewhat prophetic, being written before organ banks and transplants were possible.
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