Research Output

The Inheritors, H. G. Wells and Science Fiction: The Dimensions of the Future

  In 1901 H.G. Wells published Anticipations, a provocative speculation on the future course of technology and on how social and political systems might evolve. In the same year, Conrad and Ford published their collaborative novel The Inheritors, a fantasy involving a race of individuals from the Fourth Dimension, the Inheritors of the title, who propose to transform society very much along the lines suggested by Wells. This paper examines the similarities between Wells's predictions and the intentions of Conrad and Ford's Inheritors for the future of humanity to argue that The Inheritors is the authors' response to conversations they had with Wells in the years prior to his challenging thesis in Anticipations. The central argument is that Conrad and Ford wrote their novel as an imaginative rebuttal to Wells's more outrageous predictions.

  • Type:

    Commentary

  • Date:

    31 December 2017

  • Publication Status:

    Published

  • DOI:

    10.1353/cnd.2017.0013

  • ISSN:

    0010-6356

  • Library of Congress:

    PN Literature (General)

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    820 English & Old English literatures

  • Funders:

    Edinburgh Napier Funded

Citation

Dryden, L. (2017). The Inheritors, H. G. Wells and Science Fiction: The Dimensions of the Future. Conradiana, 49(2/3), 103-120. https://doi.org/10.1353/cnd.2017.0013

Authors

Keywords

Anticipations, The Inheritors, Fourth Dimension, Joseph Conrad, Ford Madox Ford, H.G. Wells, science fiction

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