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The Green Hills of Earth (1951)

Tekijä: Robert A. Heinlein

Muut tekijät: Katso muut tekijät -osio.

Sarjat: Future History (Collection #2 (9, 13 - 20))

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2,069227,365 (3.72)76

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Robert A. Heinlein - [The Green Hills of Earth]
This is a collection of science fiction short stories that first saw the light of day in American magazines of the late 1940's, although one of the story's 'And we also walk dogs' has a 1941 vintage. Heinlein's stories in this collection concern themselves mainly with human nature and how this copes with new science and space travel, Heinlein never ventures outside the solar system with the majority of the stories centred around a base/colony on the moon. These were stories written for magazines that would have probably had a young male readership base and to criticise them for their lack of literary merit or for their racism and sexism is perhaps missing the point. The fact that Heinlein told stories that examined aspects of human nature rather than concentrating on adventure and fantasy makes these stories worth reading, however attitudes have changed and one would do well to imagine what they might have said to you in the 1940's.

What they do say is an expanding American nation full of confidence and looking to push liberalism to it's furthest limits. The dollar is king and nearly all the stories contain elements of making money. "Delilah and the Space Rigger" is a story about a female worker who gets a job on an all male space station and has to battle the fiercely chauvinistic manager who want to send her back to earth. "Space Jockey" concerns a man who cannot give up the challenge of piloting space craft even at the expense of his marriage. In "the Long Watch' a young atomic bomb engineer tries to thwart a military takeover at an atomic moon base. 'Gentlemen be Seated' is another moon based story about surviving a leaky air-lock. We are still on the moon in "the Black Pits of Luna" which is a rather dramatic title for young boy playing a deadly game of hiding seek on the surface of the moon. The next three stories are the best in my opinion. "It's great to be back" tells of a couple who have spent many years on the moon and can no longer cope with the attitudes of earth people or of it's gravitational pull. "We also Walk Dogs" describes a company called General Services who have grown enormous by servicing rich people who are too old, too stupid or cannot be bothered to do things for themselves and "Ordeal in Space" tells of a space pilot suffering from acrophobia desperately trying to pass his psychological exam to be allowed back into space. 'The Green Hills of Earth' is a curiosity telling a story of a man suffering from radioactive sickness who writes popular songs about his life in space. "Logic of Empire" is the longest story and tells of an indentured slave colony exploiting natural resources on Venus. It's all perfectly fine as one character says because it has always been the case:

" It’s nothing new; it happened in the Old South, it happened again in California, in Mexico, in Australia, in South Africa. Why? Because in any expanding free-enterprise economy which does not have a money system designed to fit its requirements the use of mother-country capital to develop the colony inevitably results in subsistence-level wages at home and slave labor in it's colonies"

In these stories exploitation is the norm, it's the way to get ahead it's the way to make money and space is very much the new frontier. The attitudes to women and people of a different race expressed by the characters in the stories are mostly typical of what you might expect at the time and are not necessarily those of the author, however the future as seen by the author is still a man's world: perhaps a white man's world with 1940's American values and for that he can be criticised. I would imagine that President Trump and his cohorts would feel right at home. The prose is terse with much outdated slang from the late 1940's sounding quite strange and the science part of the fiction is wrapped up pretty quickly so as to not get in the way of the stories. 3.5 stars. ( )
2 ääni baswood | Feb 7, 2020 |
The Green Hills of Earth by Robert A. Heinlein

My first 2019 read; only 74 to go to achieve my 2019 reading challenge. Although this short story collection was published in the early 50s, it includes fourteen science fiction stories, part of his Future History series, written in the 40s. Most are set on space ships, space stations or in a moon colony. Most of these stories deal with the psychological and social impact of living in space rather than the technology itself. For a full review, please click here. ( )
  John_Warner | Jan 3, 2019 |
A mixed bag, in my opinion. There were several stories that I really enjoyed - particularly "The Long Watch", and "It's Great to be Back". I think I appreciated the Long Watch the most - it fits in with the heroic sacrifice that I enjoy reading about. In this case, Heinlein makes the situation and our hero truly heroic and the rewards are befitting. In "It's Great to be Back", I could tell almost right away what was going to happen - possibly because of my own ex-patriot experience. When you leave, you're like everyone else. But the leaving changes you so that coming back is not always a welcome homecoming. Of course, returning to your ex-pat life isn't exactly like you never left, either. ( )
1 ääni helver | Oct 16, 2017 |
A good, better than average collection of SciFi short stories, written post WW II, yet somehow not terribly dated. Several of them were intriguing, and worthy of a future reread. Recommended. ( )
1 ääni fuzzi | Jan 2, 2017 |
The stories were originally published in a variety of magazines between 1941 to 1949. I would expect them to feel incredibly dated, and elements of these stories are laughably outdated; yet for the most part they hold up fairly well as stories. It isn't easy or possible to fit myself back into a teenager in the late 60's to know why this collection caught my interest so much. "The Green Hills of Earth" was a great title. I could not recall at all what these stories were about, not even a favorite one, except that story, The Green Hills one, did have some elements to it that I did indeed remember these 46 or 47 years later.

These stories are really only of interest to someone who likes better than the average early moon and solar system exploration stories from that long ago pre-spaceflight time. I'm glad I re-read it even though it no longer packs a punch. When I first read this Armstrong had just walked upon the moon, and that was a marvelous time to be excited about spaceflight. Even then however these stories would have been wildly out of date. ( )
  RBeffa | Oct 30, 2016 |
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» Lisää muita tekijöitä (11 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Robert A. Heinleinensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetlaskettu
Melo, JohnKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Meltzoff, StanleyKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Szafran, GeneKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Sinun täytyy kirjautua sisään voidaksesi muokata Yhteistä tietoa
Katso lisäohjeita Common Knowledge -sivuilta (englanniksi).
Kanoninen teoksen nimi
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To My Parents
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Delilah and the Space-Rigger - Sure, we had trouble building Space Station One - but the trouble was people.
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