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Re: Dinosaur themes in science fiction


I have the Sanz book open here now and it looks like I'm going to get the Debus book as well. :)

Thanks to everyone for all the replies.


Steve Walsh wrote:
If you don't know them already I would recommend two books in exploring this idea:

Starring T. Rex!: Dinosaur Mythology and Popular Culture by Jose Luis Sanz and
Dinosaurs in Fantastic Fiction: A Thematic Survey by Allen A. Debus

The first is useful; the second essential.

Sanz's book lists a number of recurrent themes:

Lost worlds
Time travel
Future worlds
Genetically engineered

A much more satisfying and coherent read is Debus's treatment. He takes an historic approach and identifies themes similar to Sanz but explores them far more comprehensively:

Journey through time geographically (e.g. Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Karel Zeman's Journey to the Beginning of Time)
Lost worlds (Doyle, Borroughs)
At War with Dinosaurs (Sanz's 'Conflict'; e.g. Capek's War with the Newts)
Cold war metaphors (Sanz's 'Survivors'; e.g. Gojira, Bradbury's The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms)
Time-relativistic Dinosaurs (Time Travel; e.g. 'Sound of Thunder', 'Gun for Dinosaur')
Dino-Trek (Sanz's 'Exodinosaurs'; e.g. McCaffrey's Dinosaur Planet)
Rise of the Raptor (Genetically engineered dinosaurs)
Living with Dinosaurs (e.g Dinotopia - Sanz's 'Coexistence') including dinosauroids (e.g. Harrison's Eden series)

Hope this is useful.

Steve Walsh

At 01:03 PM 16/12/2007, you wrote:

I'm looking into themes that have shown up in dinosaur science fiction, like the genetic recovery idea from "Our Lady of the Sauropods" and "Jurassic Park," or the "dinosaurs survived in a remote places" theme that's shown up over and over again as in "Lost World," "The Valley of Gwangi," "Baby," "Dinosaur Summer". What are some of the most impressive ideas in fiction regarding dinosaurs?




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