Captain Kirk’s Dereliction of Duty

Captain Kirk’s Dereliction of Duty February 17, 2015

In which The Catholic Imagination confronts some of the problems with certain genres of sci-fi. I think this is certainly true of the kind of sci-fi represented by, for instance, Star Trek and some of the various other “man is evolving into a post religious being” types who trace their views back to the pernicious influence of H.G. Wells (an unquestionably great founder of the genre). But even the Star Trek universe, once Roddenberry was gone and Ronald Moore was free to play with religion again, quickly reverted to what J. Michael Straczynski understood from the inception of Babylon 5: that the human race is incorrigibly religious and will be forever.

And, of course, there are science fiction writers like John C. Wright, Michael Flynn, and perhaps the great science fiction writer of our time, Gene Wolfe who approach the genre from a deeply Catholic perspective too. They have not built world-spanning, culture infusing media empires like Roddenberry (since they don’t write for TV), but they are out there and they are doing really interesting work that challenges the genre. And they just scratch the surface of this immense genre.

By the way, somebody should get the rights to turn Eifelheim into a screenplay or Netflix mini-series.

PS:  Captain Kirk responds here.

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