History Creator / CordwainerSmith

9th Feb '18 12:08:55 PM universalperson
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination.[[note]]And no, it's not [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that Instrumentality]], [[ShoutOut but where do you think it got the name from?]][[/note]] Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].

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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination.[[note]]And no, it's not [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that Instrumentality]], [[ShoutOut but where do you think it got the name from?]][[/note]] came from Smith's stories.]][[/note]] Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].
9th Feb '18 12:00:10 PM universalperson
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination.[[note]]And no, it's not [[Anime/NeonGensisEvangelion that Instrumentality]], [[ShoutOut but where do you think it got the name from?]][[/note]] Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].

to:

The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination.[[note]]And no, it's not [[Anime/NeonGensisEvangelion [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that Instrumentality]], [[ShoutOut but where do you think it got the name from?]][[/note]] Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].
9th Feb '18 11:59:47 AM universalperson
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].

to:

The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. [[note]]And no, it's not [[Anime/NeonGensisEvangelion that Instrumentality]], [[ShoutOut but where do you think it got the name from?]][[/note]] Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].
9th Feb '18 11:56:46 AM universalperson
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]][[note]]Not [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that one]], but where do you think the name came from?[[/note]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].

to:

The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]][[note]]Not [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that one]], but where do you think the name came from?[[/note]], Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].
9th Feb '18 11:54:30 AM universalperson
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].

to:

The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], Mankind]][[note]]Not [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion that one]], but where do you think the name came from?[[/note]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other writer]].
8th Feb '18 5:39:08 AM PaulA
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* [[ChinaTakesOverTheWorld China Takes Over Venus]]: The Chinesian Goonhogo. It becomes a superpower by virtue of surviving the apocalypse. In fact, it's the only nation to survive. In "The Queen of the Afternoon", the rest of the world not under the Goonhogo is ruled by Chinese philosophers. "When the People Fell", in which China takes Venus by sheer weight of numbers is something of an UrExample of Chinese space colonization plots.

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* [[ChinaTakesOverTheWorld China Takes Over Venus]]: ChinaTakesOverTheWorld: The Chinesian Goonhogo. It becomes a superpower by virtue of surviving the apocalypse. In fact, it's the only nation to survive. In "The Queen of the Afternoon", the rest of the world not under the Goonhogo is ruled by Chinese philosophers. "When the People Fell", in which China takes Venus by sheer weight of numbers is something of an UrExample of Chinese space colonization plots.



* [[spoiler:StableTimeLoop]]: What ends up becoming known as [[TitleDrop "The Crime And The Glory of Commander Suzdal"]].

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* [[spoiler:StableTimeLoop]]: StableTimeLoop: What ends up becoming known as [[TitleDrop "The Crime And The Glory of Commander Suzdal"]].
19th Dec '17 6:04:57 PM Xtifr
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''Cordwainer Smith'' was the pen name of Doctor Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger: ScienceFiction writer, poet, and psychological warfare expert. In fact, he ''literally'' wrote the book on psychological warfare — the standard US Army textbook on the subject. He looked like a classic {{nerd}}, wrote weird little ScienceFiction stories about cats, and was apparently regarded with respect by a generation of top US diplomatic and intelligence specialists. During the Korean War, he was asked to write a set of qualifications for the head of psychological operations for the US army; he got interested enough in the possibilities of the job and so set things up that he was the only person qualified to do it. He was a man of the world, but had particular ties to China and the Far East. His godfather was Sun Yat-sen, and he and his father were confidants of Chiang Kai-shek. He also liked Australia.

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''Cordwainer Smith'' Cordwainer Smith was the pen name of Doctor Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger: ScienceFiction writer, poet, and psychological warfare expert. In fact, he ''literally'' wrote the book on psychological warfare — the standard US Army textbook on the subject. He looked like a classic {{nerd}}, wrote weird little ScienceFiction stories about cats, and was apparently regarded with respect by a generation of top US diplomatic and intelligence specialists. During the Korean War, he was asked to write a set of qualifications for the head of psychological operations for the US army; he got interested enough in the possibilities of the job and so set things up that he was the only person qualified to do it. He was a man of the world, but had particular ties to China and the Far East. His godfather was Sun Yat-sen, and he and his father were confidants of Chiang Kai-shek. He also liked Australia.
15th Dec '17 4:43:06 AM Spindriver
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Strong suggestion: read the stories first. No description can do no justice to discovering the wonder of Smith's words firsthand.

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Strong suggestion: read the stories first. No description can do no justice to discovering the wonder of Smith's words firsthand.



* AfterTheEnd: A good chunk of the Instrumentality tales are set after the Ancient Wars, which left only Morons and Saints barely surviving a wasted, poison world, hiding from death machines. "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon" are set in an era following some recovery. And even in stories set millennia later, the scars of the war remain.

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* AfterTheEnd: A good chunk of the Instrumentality tales are cycle is set after the Ancient Wars, which left only Morons and Saints barely surviving on a wasted, poison world, hiding from death machines. "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon" are set in an era following some recovery. And even in stories set millennia later, the scars of the war remain.
15th Dec '17 4:38:38 AM Spindriver
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The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other wrier]].

to:

The majority of his ScienceFiction work describes the future history of [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for the work of any other wrier]].
writer]].



* AuthorExistenceFailure: See NoodleIncident, below.



* CrystalLandscape: In ''Literature/OnTheGemPlanet'', the titular world of Anderson is compromised mostly of precious gems and crystals. As a result the human inhabitants need to import soil, which they consider more valuable than rubies and diamonds.

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* CrystalLandscape: In ''Literature/OnTheGemPlanet'', ''On the Gem Planet'', the titular world of Anderson is compromised mostly of precious gems and crystals. As a result the human inhabitants need to import soil, which they consider more valuable than rubies and diamonds.
28th Nov '17 2:51:35 PM frogpatrol
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Cordwainer Smith was the pen name of Doctor Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger: ScienceFiction writer, poet, and psychological warfare expert. In fact, he ''literally'' wrote the book on psychological warfare -- the standard US Army textbook on the subject. He looked like a classic {{nerd}}, wrote weird little SF stories about cats, and was apparently regarded with respect by a generation of top US diplomatic/intelligence specialists. During the Korean War, he was asked to write a set of qualifications for the head of psychological operations for the US army; he got interested enough in the possibilities of the job and so set things up that he was the only person qualified to do it. He was a man of the world, but had particular ties to China and the Far East -- his godfather was Sun Yat-sen, and he and his father were confidants of Chiang Kai-shek. He also liked Australia.

Most of his SpeculativeFiction work describes the future history of the [[TheVerse Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left a lot to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for anyone else's work]].

One suggestion: Read the stories first. This page could do no justice to discovering the wonder of Smith's words.

to:

Cordwainer Smith ''Cordwainer Smith'' was the pen name of Doctor Paul Myron Anthony Linebarger: ScienceFiction writer, poet, and psychological warfare expert. In fact, he ''literally'' wrote the book on psychological warfare -- the standard US Army textbook on the subject. He looked like a classic {{nerd}}, wrote weird little SF ScienceFiction stories about cats, and was apparently regarded with respect by a generation of top US diplomatic/intelligence diplomatic and intelligence specialists. During the Korean War, he was asked to write a set of qualifications for the head of psychological operations for the US army; he got interested enough in the possibilities of the job and so set things up that he was the only person qualified to do it. He was a man of the world, but had particular ties to China and the Far East -- his East. His godfather was Sun Yat-sen, and he and his father were confidants of Chiang Kai-shek. He also liked Australia.

Most The majority of his SpeculativeFiction ScienceFiction work describes the future history of the [[TheVerse the Instrumentality of Mankind]], which was richly described but left a lot much to the reader's imagination. Influenced by Chinese short stories, Smith's books [[SignatureStyle cannot be mistaken for anyone else's work]].

One
the work of any other wrier]].

Strong
suggestion: Read read the stories first. This page could No description can do no justice to discovering the wonder of Smith's words.
words firsthand.



* ''Literature/ScannersLiveInVain''

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* ''Literature/ScannersLiveInVain''"Literature/ScannersLiveInVain"



** There are a number of references to duck feasts. [[spoiler:Which makes it unfortunate for the Apicians that they happen to taste like the finest duck imaginable.]]

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** There are a number of references to duck feasts. [[spoiler:Which feasts, [[spoiler:which makes it unfortunate for the Apicians that they happen to taste like the finest duck imaginable.]]



** In "Under Old Earth", Santuna takes it to an extreme--not only is she bald, but she has no body hair.
** The cover art for the ''Instrumentality of Mankind'' anthology includes a bunch of bald people floating down to Venus. One is clearly female.
* BearsAreBadNews: Inverted with the Bear in "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon". Wise, educated, and sporting spectacles, when the Bear shows up things improve for the human characters.
* BigDumbObject: Smith was never averse to sheer scale, with buildings reaching up to the stratosphere and all. But crucially, the titular craft of "Golden The Ship Was--Oh! Oh! Oh!" is ''ninety million miles long'', taking it beyond the PlanetSpaceship range and into this category. [[spoiler:Even if it is mostly foam. Smith may have been {{parody}}ing the trope before it really got started.]]
* BilingualBonus: More like Multilingual Bonus -- many names in the Instrumentality cycle have secondary meanings if one knew the language used. And Smith used Chinese, Russian, German, Finish, Japanese, and many other languages for his theme naming.

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** In Santuna in "Under Old Earth", Santuna Earth" takes it this to an extreme--not extreme. Not only is she bald, but she has no body hair.
** The cover art for the ''Instrumentality older''Instrumentality of Mankind'' anthology collection includes a bunch of bald people floating down to Venus. One is clearly female.
* BearsAreBadNews: Inverted with in the case of the Bear in "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon". Wise, educated, and sporting spectacles, when the Bear shows up things improve for the human characters.
* BigDumbObject: Smith was never averse to sheer scale, with buildings reaching up to the stratosphere and all. But crucially, the titular craft of "Golden The Ship Was--Oh! Was—Oh! Oh! Oh!" is ''ninety million miles long'', taking it beyond the PlanetSpaceship range and into this category. [[spoiler:Even if it is mostly foam. Smith may have been {{parody}}ing the trope before it really got started.]]
* BilingualBonus: More like Multilingual Bonus -- many names in the Instrumentality cycle have secondary meanings if one knew the language used. And Smith used Chinese, Russian, German, Finish, Japanese, and many other languages for his theme naming.



* BodyDouble: In ''Norstrilia'', Rod gets ten body doubles when he arrives on Earth. Eleanor is surgically modified to look like him, and nine robot doubles are also sent out.
* BodyHorror: "A Planet Called Shayol" has a ''lot'' of this.

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* BodyDouble: In ''Norstrilia'', Rod gets ten body doubles when he arrives on Earth. Eleanor is surgically modified to look like him, and nine him. Nine robot doubles are also sent out.
* BodyHorror: "A Planet Called Shayol" has a ''lot'' of this.explores this from beginning to end.



* CanonDiscontinuity: Averted with "The Colonel Came Back from the Nothing-at-All". It's plot is eventually reworked into "Drunkboat", with "Colonel" reading like a beta version of that tale. However, it does not contradict any of the previous continuity, and presents how planoforming was discovered.

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* CanonDiscontinuity: Averted with "The Colonel Came Back from the Nothing-at-All". It's plot is eventually was reworked into "Drunkboat", with "Drunkboat". "Colonel" reading reads like a beta version of that tale. However, it The later story does not contradict any of the previous continuity, and presents shows how planoforming was discovered.



** As well as dog girls, snake girls, buffalo girls....

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** As well as dog girls, snake girls, buffalo girls....girls...



* CivilizedAnimal: The Middle-sized Bear in "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon". No, he's not an Underperson -- the Bear is simply an intelligent and civilized being. Yeah, even for the ''Instrumentality'' stories, this comes out of nowhere.

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* CivilizedAnimal: The Middle-sized Bear in "Mark Elf" and "Queen of the Afternoon". No, he's not an Underperson -- the Underperson. The Bear is simply an intelligent and civilized being. Yeah, even for the ''Instrumentality'' stories, this comes out of nowhere.
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