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[[quoteright:350:[[Creator/TomGauld http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gauld.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:The ''[[YoureJustJealous real]]'' reason behind this trope.]]

->''"[My agent] said 'You have a murder mystery up there, you have a horror book up there, you have all kinds of genres on the bestseller shelf, why not Terry Pratchett's book?' And the response was 'We don't let them out of the science fiction section'"''
-->-- '''Creator/TerryPratchett''', [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6bKfu_JGDg&feature=fvwrel interview with Mark Lawson.]]



So, you're watching television and come across a show that's set on another planet and has aliens, spaceships and time travel in it. Clearly a work of science fiction, you would assume. However, you also happen to come across an interview with the creator, who is taking pains to stress that his or her work is absolutely ''not'' science fiction and anyone who thinks it can be described as such is misguided or just plain wrong. But it has ''aliens, spaceships and TimeTravel in it;'' [[NoTrueScotsman how can it]] ''[[NoTrueScotsman not]]'' [[NoTrueScotsman be science fiction]]?

Because of the SciFiGhetto. The Sci-Fi Ghetto reflects a long-lasting stigma which has been applied towards the science fiction genre, which frequently leads creators and marketers to shun "Sci-Fi", "Science Fiction" or "Fantasy" labels as much as possible, even on shows that have clear science fiction or fantastical elements. It also reflects the tendency for critics, academics and other creators to near-automatically dismiss or disdain works which cannot escape this label being applied, regardless of relative quality or merit. Conversely, if these critics, creators and academics ''do'' feel that the work possesses merit by their standards, expect them to strenuously insist that the work is ''not'' science fiction or fantasy (How could it be? It's ''good''), regardless of how many tortuous hoops they might have to jump through in order to do so.

A lot of this has to do with snobbery. A (somewhat contradictory) perception about science fiction in general is that it is somehow both too [[ViewersAreMorons complex for mainstream audiences with 'simple' tastes]] and [[MortonsFork yet simultaneously]] not [[TrueArt literary and sophisticated]] enough for critics and academics.

This perception tends to be drawn from two extremes. In the first place, science fiction is often dismissed as lightweight, formulaic and poorly-written rubbish churned out by talentless hacks who never met a cliche they didn't enthusiastically regurgitate. On the other end of the spectrum, science fiction is often seen as aloof, dreary {{Doorstopper}}s which essentially take the form of [[AuthorFilibuster tedious and over-complicated scientific essays poorly disguised as stories]], apparently written by people who have multiple doctorates in the hard sciences yet have somehow never managed to interact with another human being before. In either case, the result is considered the same; material which is poorly written with lame plots and characterization, almost entirely lacking in literary merit.

This, of course, unfairly prejudges a massive and wide-spanning genre by its worst extremes, and ultimately takes a fairly narrow and limited view of the genre. However, it should be noted that there is plenty of evidence at both extremes to support these views -- lots of works of science fiction ''have'' fallen in the trap of focusing so much on the Big Idea that the other elements of storytelling can suffer. Even accepted classics of the genre can get so caught up in the hypothesis they're developing that they can be lacking in other literary merits. And works of science fiction tend to age less gracefully than literary fiction, because both [[TechnologyMarchesOn Technology]] and SocietyMarchesOn. For example, ''Literature/StrangerInAStrangeLand'' hypothesizes StarfishAlien Martians and fascinating new technologies, but still relegates women to sexy secretaries and nagging wives?

It's not just the works, either -- [[TheLawOfFanJackassery unfortunate]] [[FanDumb stereotypes]] of science fiction fans as a bunch of weird dorky obsessives with no social skills hasn't helped the overall impression of science fiction as a weird, off-putting and aloof body of work. Of course, when a literary author is a weird obsessive with no social skills, his introversion and eccentricity are signs of his genius.

This mindset can even affect different subsets of science fiction. Those who are HardOnSoftScience tend to criticize the softer entries on MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness...when they acknowledge the softer entries as science fiction at all.

Fantasy fiction suffers from this as well to a similar extent due to the [[Analysis/SpeculativeFiction difficulty of defining the line between science fiction and fantasy]]. In fact, fantasy fiction often [[EvenNerdsHaveStandards has it even worse]], as it is speculative in a completely implausible way (science fiction is just ''mostly'' implausible). This possibly resulted from the craving for and excitement over science in the 1950s: science fiction, for its 'faults', was seen as at least a baby-steps way to teach kids actual science so they could grow up and become scientists or engineers, whilst fantasy was associated more with the fairy tales of youth, and therefore was thought to be child-like (the supposed "childishness" of fairy tales themselves is [[WhatDoYouMeanItsNotForKids another issue entirely]]). This is probably why a section in a bookstore containing science fiction, fantasy, and other speculative fiction genres will almost always be referred to as the science fiction section. The reverse of this also crops up, but it's somewhat rarer.

This happens to {{horror}} as well, especially when it overlaps with Sci-Fi and Fantasy. It's been a little more accepted than those two genres, at least on the literary front (and, lately, [[Series/TheWalkingDead television]] [[Series/AmericanHorrorStory as well]]), but you'll rarely seen awards given to horror works. With cinematic horror in particular, with the exception of [[UsefulNotes/TheHaysCode Hays Code]]-era classics (like [[UniversalHorror Universal's monster movies]] or the works of Creator/AlfredHitchcock) and a selection of other indisputably great films (most of them dating to no later than [[NewHollywood the '70s]]), you'd be hard-pressed to find professional film critics who don't view horror as a land where [[{{Gorn}} grisly violence]] and {{exploitation|Film}} stand in for plot and characters. And while there is a degree of snobbery involved, much like with the disdain for sci-fi and fantasy, there are also [[SturgeonsLaw a very large number of films]] that bear out the worst stereotypes of the genre (also much like the aforementioned genres). Much like sci-fi and fantasy fans, horror fans also have their own (arguably more insulting) stereotypes attached to them, often portrayed as people who get off on violence, sex and [[InterplayOfSexAndViolence the juxtaposition thereof]], and may be using such films as a way to vicariously live out their own sick fantasies. None other than famed horror director Creator/JohnCarpenter once remarked that horror is viewed by the mainstream as being just a notch above pornography.

Some embrace the Ghetto eagerly. Some writers have few pretensions to attaining the TrueArt status their peers yearn for, and gleefully embrace the whole [[TwoFistedTales pulp pot-boiler]] or BMovie aspect of the genre, or the chance to expand on a complex idea to a smaller audience they know will get it. Similarly, some fans eagerly embrace the ghetto and will prefer or, in extreme cases, only engage with media from within it, often dismissing those who engage with media outside of it as [[ViewersAreMorons morons lacking imagination]]. This attitude, of course, tends to overlook the fact that it also takes energy, creativity and imagination to construct a fine non-Science Fiction work, and can be indicative of [[NotSoDifferent a similar kind of snobbery to that which creates the idea of this Ghetto in the first place]]. It's important to remember that the Ghetto isn't bad because "quality" literature or cinema is bad; it's bad because it assumes science fiction, fantasy and horror cannot be quality literature or cinema.

This is slowly changing, however; more and more [[OneOfUs creators and critics who aren't ashamed to acknowledge an interest and inspiration from "niche" genres]] are producing and discussing more works in such genres which are gaining both mainstream accessibility and critical acclaim. The fact that [[Literature/HarryPotter the most popular and best-selling children's book series]] ''and'' [[Franchise/StarWars a large number of]] [[Film/{{Avatar}} the highest-grossing]] and/or [[Film/TheLordOfTheRings critically-acclaimed]] films in recent history have been either science fiction and/or fantasy has also helped -- although of course, this then leads some fans, creators and critics [[ItsPopularNowItSucks to focus on how popular these entities are]] when criticizing them instead.

For the sake of overall cohesion, terms like "{{speculative fiction}}", "{{magic realism}}" and "{{psychological thriller}}" have cropped up to help distinguish the extent and degree of science fiction, fantasy or horror influence in a work. Though some will complain that these are simply arbitrary distinctions having to do with stuffy ivory tower academics looking for excuses not to pay attention to "science fiction", a brief gander at those pages should indicate them as being clear subgenres or supergenres. The terms themselves, however, can be misused for this purpose, usually by people who don't fully understand the distinctions between them. On a related note, detractors have often been heard to refer to science fiction, fantasy and horror disparagingly as "genre" fiction (crime, romance, detective novels, Westerns and the like are often lumped in as well) -- as though ''proper'' novels don't belong in their own respective genres.

Keep in mind the trope may actually be americentrist, as talented authors back in Europe helped to give Sci-Fi credit since the 19th century. Most known is HGWells and JulesVerne, who is to this day the second most translated author in the world behind AgathaChristie. Besides, it doesn't concern only literature. Cinema embraced Sci-Fi way back in 1902 thanks to GeorgesMelies' ATripToTheMoon and like noted above, owe its biggest successes to Sci-Fi and Fantasy, despite how harder it is to not stretch the WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief whenever you deal with those genres on screen.

A SubTrope of PublicMediumIgnorance. Can overlap with AnimationAgeGhetto, as animated works have a strong tendency to be genre fiction. See also NotWearingTights, NotUsingTheZWord, and DeadHorseGenre.

Not to be confused with IndustrialGhetto or FantasticGhetto.
------

!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''Charley's War''. It's probably the most underestimated British graphic novel/magazine comic series sold in the States, made worse by bookstores stacking them along with ''ComicBook/JudgeDredd'' and other ''ComicBook/TwoThousandAD'' titles - because Pat Mills wrote the plot. It's an extremely realistic series of WWI war stories.
* As mentioned in passing above, there's now a bit of a ghetto where the only "serious" or "artistic" comics are ones that have no science fictional or fantastical elements to them.
* Fantasy and sci-fi comics, particularly superhero comics, are an example of how science fiction and related genres help to perpetuate their ghettoization by becoming increasingly insular and alienating all but a few diehard fans due to problems like needless complexity, excessive jargon, and an unwillingness to reach out to new audiences.
* {{Creator/Kieron Gillen}} admitted, that for some time he believed in fantasy sub-ghetto (mostly because of being critical towards StandardFantasySetting and related tropes) and would prefer to call himself "speculative fiction writer" until ex-girlfriend pointed out to him that if speculative aspect of his works boils down to [[Comicbook/{{Phonogram}} magic music]] then he is a fantasy writer.
* Sci-fi comics form their own little sub-ghetto, often being treated as being less 'worthy' than literary science fiction and movie / TV science fiction (which are themselves often considered lesser than literary science fiction).
** ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'' won a HugoAward and was declared one of the 100 best English-language novels by ''Time''. When people read it, they are often stunned by its depth...''when'' they read it. When they don't, they say, "Oh, if it's so good, why isn't it [[QualityByPopularVote as popular as Batman and Superman]] comics?"
*** Which, of course, ignores the fact that ''Watchmen'' is one of the best selling comic books of all time.
*** ...suggesting that the answer is "because it's only one volume."
** The {{Hugo Award}}s added a one-time category "Other Forms", which is the award that ''Watchmen'' won. Some thought that this was an attempt to avoid having to give the "best novel" award to a comic book. In 2009 though, they added a separate category for Best Graphic Story (won by the then-current print volume of ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'').
** Although the claim that comics are artistically "inferior" to prose is just ignorant snobbery, it ''is'' legitimate to argue that comics should not be judged in the same ''category'' as prose, because comics are a fundamentally different medium. Judging a graphic novel alongside a prose novel is like comparing the prose novel to a play, or to a poem, or to a movie, or even to a painting. They are self-evidently different types of storytelling. Calling them the same thing probably does aid comics in gaining the prestige that prose is afforded in our society, but it makes it difficult for a contest's judges to objectively compare the merits of two such different things.
*** This is the argument that led the World Fantasy Awards to ''change the rules regarding qualification for the award'' after an issue of ''ComicBook/TheSandman'' (specifically [[ComicBook/TheSandman Sandman #19]], entitled ''A Midsummer Night's Dream'') won in 1991. According to the revamped rules, comic books ''cannot even be entered'' for the award, much less actually win it again. Comic books can now only be considered for the Special Award Professional category. The World Fantasy Awards claims that this is not a change in the rules; however, that Sandman issue won as a short story, not as a special award.
** Played for laughs (via ComicBook movies) in [[http://www.dorktower.com/2008/05/23/comics-archive-1040/ this]] ''DorkTower'' strip.
* Parodied in Creator/GrantMorrison's ''[[Franchise/JusticeLeagueOfAmerica JLA:Classified]]'', in which, faced with an [[spoiler:apparently]] alien invasion, Batman is forced to resort to the contents of his literal "sci-fi closet".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* ''AnotherEarth'' has the sci-fi element right there in the title, but is mostly a story about grief and redemption. To be fair, it's sci-fi for {{hipster}}s.
* ''Film/BlackSwan''. A young ballerina with [[StageMom an overbearing mother]] is so dedicated to getting the lead role in a production of ''SwanLake'' that she starts going crazy, having hallucinations that [[MindScrew may or may not include]] BodyHorror and her sultry rival for the role. Had it been released in TheSeventies, it would've been called a horror film. Released in 2010, it's called a psychological drama and wins NataliePortman an Oscar.
* ''TheCuriousCaseOfBenjaminButton'' was nominated for several Academy Awards and Golden Globes, including Best Drama and Best Actor. It's about a man who is born old and ages in reverse. That sound like MagicRealism to you?[[note]]But Magical Realism isn't fantasy. Cough cough, ahem. Sorry, I had something in my throat. (Sarcasm)[[/note]]
* Even compliments can do this at times. RogerEbert's [[http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080716/reviews/55996637 review]] of ''Film/TheDarkKnight'' starts off by declaring
-->''Batman'' isn't a comic book anymore. Christopher Nolan's ''The Dark Knight'' is a haunted film that leaps beyond its origins and becomes an engrossing tragedy.[..]This film, and to a lesser degree ''Film/IronMan'', redefine the possibilities of the "comic-book movie."
** Even studios themselves have taken to this. Kevin Feige is quite fond of saying that ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheWinterSoldier'' is a [[ConspiracyThriller "political thriller"]] that just happens to star a [[ComicBook/CaptainAmerica patriotic Super-Soldier]], for instance. (Though given much of the rest of [[Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse Marvel Studios' output]] - especially the next example - this case is probably less trying to distance itself from the genre and more bragging about its versatility.)
** This trope is why ''everyone'' was surprised when ''Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy'' was announced. It's 1) a sci-fi movie 2) starring superheroes many comic book readers have never heard of, 3) one of whom is a talking raccoon. It was even pointed out by a few fans that, while DC stated that [[GirlShowGhetto they couldn't make a Wonder Woman movie]], Marvel [[RefugeInAudacity went right ahead with a gun-slinging, talking raccoon]].
* ''Film/DonnieDarko'' is almost always interpreted as an [[EveryoneIsJesusInPurgatory allegorical]] MindScrew rather than a fantasy film about a unstable time loop that Donnie has to [[StableTimeLoop fix.]] [[WordOfGod Richard Kelly]] has repeatedly said it is a comic book movie, and Donnie is a super hero, and the DirectorsCut drives this home.
* ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}}'' movies tend to be forked straight into the Sci-Fi ghetto, even though the original film is a scary and serious movie, as well as [[SomeAnvilsNeedToBeDropped a not-remotely-subtle commentary on the morality of nuclear weapons]].
* ''Film/{{Inception}}'', by the same director of the above mentioned ''Film/TheDarkKnight''. It involves invading other people's heads through weird technology. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Inception_(film)/Archive_1#This_is_.2Anot.2A_science_fiction.2C_it_is_fantasy.3B_please_don.27t_make_.22science_fiction.22_a_meaningless_term Didn't stop people from arguing it was "fantasy" instead]].
* Complaints about [[Film/IndianaJonesAndTheKingdomOfTheCrystalSkull the latest]] ''Franchise/IndianaJones'' film often revolve around people being unable to accept aliens in Indy, despite them not being any less plausible than the radioactive [[Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk Ark of the Covenant]], [[Film/IndianaJonesAndTheTempleOfDoom Indian dark magic]] or the ''frigging [[Film/TheLastCrusade Holy Grail]]'' in the previous films. This is because religion-induced magic and SF-induced magic are worlds apart by fandom and by shelving. It could also be about the ''inconsistency''. For many people, the presence of the Ark of the Covenant and the Holy Grail are definitive proof that the Abrahamic God actually exists in Indy's universe. It is therefore presumed that interdimensional aliens would not be ''allowed'' to turn up and start teaching primitive humans advanced knowledge, less still to induce said primitives to ''worship'' them. ([[IfJesusThenAliens If Jesus, Then Not Aliens]].) Of course, you could equally argue that a) advanced aliens are a means to an end for God, or b) the Ark and the Grail are in fact [[AncientAstronauts technological artifacts crafted by said aliens]], not divine artifacts.
** Indeed, Frank Darabont's original script for ''Crystal Skull'' alluded to the idea that aliens were responsible for human religions.
** Also consider that the [[Film/TempleOfDoom second movie]] validates Hinduism. So it's really more of a FantasyKitchenSink.
** There's also the fact that in real life, ''many'' people have pretended to be gods (many cult leaders, for example, but also many ancient rulers) or honestly believed themselves to be descended from gods (for example, AlexanderTheGreat believed he was descended from Hercules and Zeus, while the Japanese royal family believe themselves to be the descendants of Amaterasu). God hasn't directly intervened to put a stop to that, so why would He be any more likely to step in and prevent aliens from claiming they're gods?
* Also averted with ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' film trilogy. Not only is the third film the only SpeculativeFiction film to ever win an AcademyAward for Best Picture and Director, it is also tied with ''Film/BenHur'' and ''Film/{{Titanic}}'' for [[OscarBait the most Academy Awards won by a single film]].
* Some fans of ''Film/TheMatrix'' refused to call it sci-fi, as apparently "It's not sci-fi unless it's in space/the future". Even though it was explicitly set ''in the aftermath of a RobotWar''. Not to mention that it ''was'' set in the future; the sequences apparently taking place in ThePresentDay are illusionary, a virtual reality transmitted directly to the brains of artificially-grown humans.
* Creator/FritzLang's seminal science fiction epic ''Film/{{Metropolis}}'', after many decades of [[ReCut re-edits]] and [[MissingEpisode presumably lost footage]], has now been almost fully restored. Film historian Martin Koerber, who oversaw the two most recent restoration projects, [[http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/05/movies/05metropolis.html had this to say]]:
-->“It’s no longer a science-fiction film. The balance of the story has been given back. It’s now a film that encompasses many genres, an epic about conflicts that are ages old. The science-fiction disguise is now very, very thin.”
* ''Film/{{Pandorum}}'' was hardly a critical success at the box office. It was marketed as a horror film, but in the end explained everything, probably annoying the hell out of people [[GainaxEnding who like their horror left mysterious and unexplained]]. However as a scifi film it's pretty good.
* ''Film/TheSilenceOfTheLambs'', one of only three films to win all of the "Big Five" {{Academy Award}}s[[note]]Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay), and Best Picture. The other two films are ''Film/ItHappenedOneNight'' and ''Literature/OneFlewOverTheCuckoosNest''.[[/note]], is almost never referred to as a horror film, despite it being about a SerialKiller who [[ImAHumanitarian eats people]] and another one who [[GenuineHumanHide flays women and wears their skin]]. It is almost always referred to as a PsychologicalThriller, and indeed helped to lay out [[FollowTheLeader a template for such films]] in TheNineties, in which (usually female) police protagonists hunted down serial killers and often found themselves nearly getting killed by them -- and like ''Silence'', very rarely would those films be called horror.
** Not really the best example, as ''Silence'' is really much more of a character study combined with the procedural detective genre; a ''lot'' of time is spent learning how the FBI profiles serial killers. While it certainly has horrific ''elements'', it really does fall more in line with the procedural/thriller genre than horror, which is about, well, ''fear'', as the name implies. Similarly, ''TheSixthSense'' is not horror, as nothing about the film with the exception of a few jump scares, are supposed to be frightening.
* Some people will insist that ''Franchise/StarWars'' is fantasy masquerading as sci-fi due to the fact that it does not attempt to explain its {{technobabble}} (which, of course, all [[NoTrueScotsman true]] sci-fi [[InfoDump must do]]) and its use of The Force as AWizardDidIt. While ''Star Wars'' does follow many of the classic heroic tropes of mythological fantasy (as described in Joseph Campbell's "Hero of a Thousand Faces"), claiming that it is "only" fantasy ignores the fact that ''Star Wars'' is no [[MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness softer]] than most early sci-fi and the fact that something [[ScienceFantasy can be both]].
** Hell, Creator/DavidBrin had a full-blown, foaming-at-the-mouth [[AuthorFilibuster essay or rant, depending on your point of view]] and followed it up with an entire ''book'' called ''Star Wars on Trial'' with him on "prosecution." Matt Stover headed up the "defense." Charges levelled against the Galaxy Far Far Away were that it was "mere" fantasy masquerading for SF, that it "dumbed down the genre," that GFFA was inherently sexist, feudal, and promoted ubermenschen and "midichlorian mutants" over the values that sci-fi was "supposed" to champion.
** Some fans and critics go the other way and argue that use of classic heroic tropes ''raises'' Star Wars to mythological fantasy like the works of Creator/JRRTolkien or Creator/WilliamShakespeare rather than mere "sci-fi".
** Note that a lot of the people saying ''Franchise/StarWars'' is "future fantasy" or "space fantasy" aren't saying one is better than the other, they're just trying to nail down its genre.
** Creator/LiamNeeson said in a [[Creator/TheBBC Radio 4]] interview "Science fiction is set in the future, and this is set a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away".
** It's amazing though, how many people think ''Franchise/StarWars'' does take place in the future, even though it tells you it's set in the past at the beginning of each movie. The fact that it [[HumanAliens has humans in it]] seems to make some people think it has to be in our future.
** It has been claimed that the reason [[ANewHope the first Star Wars movie]] didn't win the Oscar for Best Picture is that the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences are a bunch of artsy snobs who would ''never'' give such a high award to a [turns up nose haughtily] science fiction film. The fact that ''Star Wars'' lost out to ''AnnieHall'' may be evidence of that. (Or it may be evidence that the Academy is absolutely in love with Creator/WoodyAllen and gave the award to ''Annie Hall'' because they wanted Creator/WoodyAllen to win Best Picture for ''something''.)
** For the sake of balance, it should be noted that ''Film/AnnieHall'' is an excellent film in its own right, though it does not have the popular appeal of ''Franchise/StarWars''. Another example was at the 53rd Academy Awards in '81, where ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' wasn't even nominated for Best Picture, which was won by ''Ordinary People''[[note]]Which also beat out ''RagingBull'' and ''TheElephantMan''[[/note]], a fact [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial that totally had nothing to do with the Academy's love of Robert Redford.]] Interestingly, some have actually accused the Academy of dumbing down for ''daring'' to award Best Picture to films such as ''{{Braveheart}}'' and ''ForrestGump'', which, whilst not fantasy, were considered too "moneymaking" "crowd-pleasing" (read: "plebeian") for the Oscars.
*** Let's not forget that ''Annie Hall'' resides in a deeper ghetto: both the '''ComedyGhetto''' and the subset '''Romantic Comedy Ghetto''' - the latter of which is even looked down on ''worse'' by science fiction fans and the male demographic.
* For some reason, action movies seem particularly prone to ignoring the ghetto. ''The Matrix'', above, is a partial example, but a more illustrative one would be ''Franchise/{{Terminator}}'', which is referred to as action far more often than sci-fi or horror, and certainly more than action sci-fi. Then again, which is more important to the series: the fact that it has time-travelling robots, the fact that those robots are ruthlessly stalking a helpless protagonist (in [[Film/TheTerminator the first movie]], [[CharacterDevelopment at least]]) like something out of her worst nightmares[[note]]Or, more specifically, Creator/JamesCameron's nightmares -- he got the idea for the film from a dream about a robot skeleton rising from flames.[[/note]], or [[RuleOfCool the coolness of the fights those robots get into]]?
** [[DeathOfTheAuthor Take it or leave it]], but the makers of the film said that they made the club be called "Tech Noir" because they thought that they were more or less creating a new genre ([[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin sci-fi fused with noir, I guess]]) and were hoping the term would catch on.
*** Unfortunately there already is an established name for that genre: CyberPunk.
**** A term NewerThanTheyThink: Bruce Bethke coined the name in a short story from 1980, but it wouldn't be published in 1983 and not receive widespread use until the release of ''{{Neuromancer}}'' that came out in the same year as TheTerminator.
* ''[[Film/TheThing1982 The Thing]]'' is a story about men going up against a shape-shifting extraterrestrial monster unlike anything on Earth. You'll almost always see it listed among the top horror films (and it is a great horror story), but you'll very rarely see it listed as the piece of incredible science fiction it also happens to be.
* This is the reason that [[ExecutiveMeddling the executives at MGM]] insisted on changing the ending of ''Film/TheWizardOfOz'' to make it clear that the Land of Oz [[AllJustADream only existed in Dorothy's imagination]]. In the book, it was a genuine fantasyland, but they didn't think the audience could ever take that seriously. Sure enough, ''The Wizard of Oz'' is still recognized as one of the most popular and iconic films ever made, but many people would still argue that it "doesn't count" as a fantasy film because of the ending.
* Averted with Creator/TheCriterionCollection, which is renowned for its highbrow nature but has included sci-fi films of all kinds -- B-pictures such as ''First Man Into Space'' and ''Robinson Crusoe on Mars'', arty foreign fare like ''Film/LaJetee'' and the 1972 version of ''Literature/{{Solaris}}'', and even the original ''[[Film/{{Gojira}} Godzilla]]'' -- without acting like they ''aren't'' sci-fi. Actual back cover blurbs have included "[[Film/TheManWhoFellToEarth a daring exploration of science fiction as an art form]]", "[[Film/RoboCop1987 a grown-up superhero fantasy come to vivid, bloody life]]", and even "[[Film/{{Armageddon}} doomsday space epic]]". And they '''all''' get the same LimitedSpecialCollectorsUltimateEdition treatment other Criterion titles do (the first film referenced in the preceding sentence even got to be one of the first four Blu-Rays Criterion produced). Add fantasy and horror movies to those, and the list ''really'' takes off.
* Creator/JamesCameron is an interesting case when it comes to this. He's regarded as one of the greatest directors in Hollywood by moviegoers and professional critics alike (even those whose tastes lean toward [[TrueArt the highbrow]]). And all but two of his films are either sci-fi or horror. It's a different case when it comes to the Academy, however, with ''Film/{{Titanic}}'' being his only film to be nominated for major Oscars and actually win.
* TheWestern also long suffered from this kind of effect, as demonstrated by the way many critics wrote that ''Film/HighNoon'' was "more than a Western" or movie histories that proceeded from the belief that the {{Spaghetti Western}}s of the mid-1960 were the first ones to revise and deconstruct the genre, apparently unaware that e. g. ''TheSearchers'' (1956) even existed, quite possibly because it was directed by genre veteran Creator/JohnFord. Even Spaghetti Westerns were VindicatedByHistory. Roger Ebert reviewed ''TheGoodTheBadAndTheUgly'' as one of his first films and gave it three stars and admitted when he put it on his Great Movies list that the movie was a four star film and that the only reason he had given it 3 stars back in his original review was that a four star review would have been too unexpected at the time.
* ''Film/EternalSunshineOfTheSpotlessMind'' is usually referred to as a romantic drama film or a psychological drama, despite being based around a premise that wouldn't seem the least bit out of place in a Philip K. Dick novel (a fictional technology that allows one to selectively erase a person's memories). Nevertheless, it's one of the most critically acclaimed films of the 2000s and won an Oscar for its screenplay.
* Creator/RogerEbert is known for averting this: science fiction is one of his favourite genres, and [[RogerEbertGreatMoviesList his list of great movies]] contains numerous examples from the genre. Additionally, he has on two occasions (''Film/MinorityReport'' and ''Film/DarkCity'') named a science fiction film his favourite film of the year.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* ''AtlantaNights'' itself is not a work of science fiction (ostensibly it is a murder mystery) but it merits special mention as its creation lies in the invocation of the SciFiGhetto. Publish America is a Vanity Press whose website claims that it only accepts high quality manuscripts from authors but in actual fact publish anything at the cost of the author. It owns a website called Authors Market in which it stated that in two separate articles that science fiction and fantasy are by nature bad. A set of sci-fi and fantasy authors retaliated and produced a stupendously rubbish manuscript that was accepted by Publish America. Here's a quote from one of the articles, ''Only trust your eyes'', which inspired this retaliation:

-->"But, alas, the SciFi and Fantasy genres have also attracted some of the lesser gods, writers who erroneously believe that SciFi, because it is set in a distant future, does not require believable storylines, or that Fantasy, because it is set in conditions that have never existed, does not need believable every-day characters. Obviously, and fortunately, there are not too many of them, but the ones who are indeed not ashamed to be seen as literary parasites and plagiarists, are usually the loudest, just like the proverbial wheel that needs the most grease."
* John Connolly is a well-known mystery writer, who also wrote ''Literature/TheBookOfLostThings'', wherein a boy travels through a FracturedFairyTale world to rescue his baby brother from a monster; The Gates, wherein cultists open a portal to hell in Central Park; and Nocturnes, a short-story collection heavy on the NightmareFuel. Guess what section Barnes & Noble puts them in? And it's worth noting, these aren't even fantasy-mysteries. Straight-up horror-fantasy all the way.
* Inverted by Creator/NealStephenson's ''Literature/{{Cryptonomicon}}''. In spite of it being a mixture of historical and contemporary fiction, he insisted it be published as science fiction, on the grounds that science fiction is not so much a genre as an ''attitude''.[[note]]The attitude is important, but the fact that almost half the book is set [[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed in fictional cultures or countries]] might also be important. The modern plot wouldn't have happened without the Sultan of Kinakuta's e-business policies, and the island of Qwghlm was too perfect a setting for the WWII cryptology plot to actually exist in the real world. This said, fictional cultures or countries are not themselves exclusive to science fiction or fantasy.[[/note]]Then Creator/WilliamGibson followed suit with ''[[Literature/BigendBooks Pattern Recognition]]'', dubbing it "A tale of Future Present" and possibly giving a name to the movement, if it ever catches on. Which is ironic, given that William Gibson hates naming subgenres.
* The ''{{Dune}}'' series is sci-fi, of the best kind, but you'll still find people complaining about it being shelved in the sci-fi/fantasy section.
* OrsonScottCard wrote a foreword to ''EndersGame'', railing against the SciFiGhetto. Well, that and the fact he was accused of [[HollywoodPsych failing psychology forever]] by people working with talented kids and less so by actual talented kids.
* According to [[http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/books/article2961480.ece an article in the Sunday Times Online]], Salman Rushdie's first novel, ''Grimus'', was about to win an award for best SF novel of the year, but the publishers withdrew at the last minute. They didn't want Rushdie painted as an SF writer. If it happens to HGWells, you'll know it's time to start the revolution. (It must've worked, because almost ''all'' of his books have sci-fi or fantasy elements yet are considered LitFic.)
* Margaret Atwood's near-future (at the time of writing) ''TheHandmaidsTale'' was obviously social/cultural science-fiction [[note]]It takes place in a BadFuture where high levels of radiation and strains of HIV and syphilis caused wide-spread sterility, and when an extremist StayInTheKitchen Christian group took over the US, the entirely digital currency made it easy to deprive women of economic power.[[/note]] (and even won a prestigious scifi award), but she refused to admit that. Another Atwood novel, ''OryxAndCrake'', is even more blatantly science fiction: [[GeneticEngineeringIsTheNewNuke genetic engineering]] has run amok and [[DepopulationBomb destroyed everybody except the protagonist]]. Yet, in creative writing departments of some universities, Atwood is a hero and ArthurCClarke is a hack, despite the fact that most likely none of the people dumping on him have even read his work. Go figure.
** Margaret Atwood also made the infamous comment that ''OryxAndCrake'' wasn't science fiction because SF is about "talking squid in space", which [[http://www.talkingsquidsinouterspace.com/ went memetic]] in the SF community. Later, her benchmark became "talking cabbages" and "Planet X".
** There are signs that Atwood has mellowed; she even participated in an online article for ''The Guardian'' titled ''[[http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2005/jun/17/sciencefictionfantasyandhorror.margaretatwood Why We Need Science-Fiction]]'' It seems she's seen the error of her ways.
*** The genre confusion surrounding Atwood's books seem to stem from the fact that she uses the term "speculative fiction" rather than "dystopia", but given the settings of ''The Handmaid's Tale'' and ''Oryx and Crake'', her work undeniably falls under that heading. All dystopian novels - (''Brave New World'', ''Nineteen Eighty-Four'' and so on) make heavy use of sci-fi elements, but their main focus is on society, which appears to be the point she's making by refusing to refer to her work as sci-fi.
* By the same token, there's a display in the window of King's College, London of graduates who have gone on to greater things. Susan Hill, Hanif Kureishi and Thomas Hardy are all "writers" or "novelists." ''Sir'' Arthur C. Clarke is specifically identified as a "sci-fi writer."
* Creator/JKRowling is infamous for saying that she "didn't realize that she was writing a fantasy story" until she finished the first ''Literature/{{Harry Potter|and the Philosophers Stone}}'' book. This trope is presumably why the series has not won many notable awards[[note]]The series did win a few awards for ''Philosopher's Stone'' and ''Chamber of Secrets'' when they were first released in the UK, while the series was still gathering a following. After ''[[Literature/HarryPotterAndThePrisonerOfAzkaban Prisoner of Azkaban]]'' was published, JKR publicly announced that she didn't want Harry Potter nominated for any book awards because she wanted to let other children's authors get exposure for their work.[[/note]]
** That was a response to an interview question about whether she ''intended'' to write fantasy:
-->'''"Do you have any sort of target audience when you write these books?'''
-->''Me. I truly never sat down and thought, What do I think kids will like? I really, really was so inflamed by the idea when it came to me because I thought it would be so much fun to write. In fact, I don't really like fantasy. It's not so much that I don't like it, I really haven't read a lot of it.'' [...] ''It didn't occur to me for quite a while that I was writing fantasy when I'd started "Harry Potter," because I'm a bit slow on the uptake about those things. I was so caught up in it. And I was about two thirds of the way through, and I suddenly thought, This has got unicorns in it. I'm writing fantasy!"'' ([[http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0700-newsweek-jones.html source]])
* An essay in a book called ''British Comedy Greats'' in which the author stubbornly and repeatedly insists that ''Franchise/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy'' is not really science fiction. Because it's satirical, apparently. It is likely that the author was trying to make the distinction between genre as driving force of plot and genre as setting.
* Several reviews for ''Literature/TheHost'' on Amazon, have described the novel as sci-fi for people who don't like sci-fi.
* This trope is lampooned in ''Literature/HowToSurviveAHorrorMovie'' with regards to the horror genre. If you find yourself in a big-budget, respectable-looking horror movie (really?), then odds are good that you're not actually in a horror movie, but rather, in a PsychologicalThriller. In which case, the only advice the book can offer is that your missing child probably never existed, and that [[TheUnfairSex your husband]] is the bad guy.
* Inversion: The science-fiction trappings of ''Literature/IAmLegend'' often get exaggerated to the point of drowning its horror nature - two out of three [[TheFilmOfTheBook movie adaptations]] calling the monsters [[NotUsingTheZedWord mutants instead of vampires]], and some copies of the book list it as science fiction rather than horror.
* An early Soviet edition of the ''LordOfTheRings'' which was heavily revamped to look like SciFi (obvious cause: publication of some "suspicious" "fantasy" was unthinkable, whereas SciFi had some respect). Just one quote: "[[ClarkesThirdLaw It's not a Ring, it's some kind of gadget]]".
* ''Literature/RoadsidePicnic'' languished in a neighborhood of the Ghetto for years. In the afterword of the 2012 translation, [[WordOfGod Boris Strugatsky explains]] that for eight years he and his brother battled the Soviet censorship bureau denying the novel publication. They {{Bowdlerised}} the text quickly enough and the only political concern was that the Russian character be identified as a Soviet. What held the novel up was the censor's refusal to accept a sci fi story that was gritty and realistic; the protagonist is a real man struggling with himself, civilization's ugliness, and sneaking into the weird landfill-like Zone as a literal thief. The censors expected a square-jawed hero boldly exploring the great unknown for the benefit of humanity, nothing but pure escapist fantasy.
* KurtVonnegut would sometimes state he didn't write science fiction, and spend his life fighting the label; despite writing novels such as ''Literature/MotherNight'', ''God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater'', ''Hocus Pocus'', ''Deadeye Dick'', ''Jailbird'', and ''Literature/BreakfastOfChampions'' (all of which contain no Sci-fi), his time-travelling alien-abducted protagonist of ''SlaughterhouseFive'' made critics constantly label him otherwise.
** It's notable, however, that Vonnegut often alluded to the Sci-fi Ghetto via {{metafiction}}, such as with [[AuthorAvatar Kilgore Trout]][[note]]The reported author of over 73 different novels, all published by different, now defunct publishers.[[/note]] and Eliot Rosewater.[[note]] In one book, he crashes a Sci-fi writers convention to tell them that while they couldn't write, they were the only ones talking about the issues that matter.[[/note]]
** It's worth mentioning, too, that two of Vonnegut's earliest novels are quite clearly science fiction: ''Player Piano'' (about a mechanized future society) and ''Literature/TheSirensOfTitan'' (about, among other things, an interplanetary war). ''Literature/CatsCradle'', ''Literature/{{Galapagos}}'', and ''Slapstick'' also contain genre elements.
** This is before we get into ''Timequake'', which admits freely in the prologue and throughout the text that it's the remains of a novel ("Timequake One") he couldn't make work mixed in with his thoughts, experiences and recollections of the previous months, and a large dose of metafiction. "Timequake One" is as SF, or slightly less, than ''EternalSunshineOfTheSpotlessMind''. His genre situation is possibly best summed up by the fact that in Foyle's, the famous bookshop in London, about half of his books are filed under Science Fiction and half under Fiction.
** It should also be noted that, as the text of the article itself makes plain, science fiction was at that time still not universally known or accepted as a genre in the first place. Had Vonnegut been writing today then he no doubt would have found his doubts about the validity of the very idea of there being such a thing as sci-fi (which he thought was a stupid and generic term applied to anything that happens to "notice technology") too much of a minority or obsolete view to try to get any readers to take seriously. At that time, though, he was not the only person uncertain that the classification had any justification for existing in the first place. It was still a relatively young and less widespread label that was perhaps not yet fully defined.
* ''Time's Arrow'' by Martin Amis was hailed as a revolutionary novel because it portrayed a man who observed time in reverse. Of course it wasn't sci-fi because Mr Amis is a '''proper''' author.
* Creator/AndrzejSapkowski (who himself joked his [[Franchise/TheWitcher Witcher]] stories achieved broad popularity because someone called them "post-modern", thus acceptable for mainstream) spoke out against the sub-ghetto of fantasy within the broader SciFiGhetto. As he said:
---> While I can place the equation mark between the ninth part of ''The Magic Shit'' and the ninth part of ''The Shit from Outer Space'', I won't automatically assume superiority of the latter, even if it is shit positronic with titanium armour and fore- and aft-firing lasers.
** In the same essay he compared behavior of Science-Fiction fans looking down on fantasy to hare from La Fontaine's ''The Hare and the Frogs'' - having their favorite genre being picked on by mainstream, they pick on fantasy just like cowardly hare scares frogs.
* An NPR interview with a book critic went down some strange roads. The critic passionately defended PhilipKDick for his mind-bending ideas and thought-provoking books, and went on to claim that Dick did not write science fiction. Because SF is bad, and Dick was a good writer.
* A number of recent authors, including Creator/CoryDoctorow, have commented on the advantages of targeting science fiction toward the Young Adult market. It's a rather broader ghetto: adult science fiction gets hidden away in the "Sci-Fi/Fantasy" section of the bookstore. Write a story about aliens and zombies aimed at teenagers, and it'll get shelved in "Young Adult Fiction", right next to ''The Outsiders'' and ''Gossip Girl''. If you don't see why this is a big deal, ask [[Literature/HarryPotter J. K. Rowling]].
* Apparently, when you get your Literature License you get a coupon entitling you to one free SF novel - preferably a {{dystopia}} or [[AfterTheEnd post-apocalypse]] tale. Once the coupon is used, you're in danger of becoming a "genre writer" if you produce another one.
* Creator/CSLewis and Creator/JRRTolkien several times ([[GentlemanSnarker in polite English fashion of course]]) wrote lengthy passages saying effectively,"Darn right I'm a fantasy writer and if you're such a shallow, robotic-minded goon as to look down on fantasy, so much the worse for you."
* David Mitchell (no, [[NamesTheSame not that one]]) often has sections in his books which are unambiguously science fiction. Two of his books, ''Literature/CloudAtlas'' and ''Ghostwritten'' contain several linked stories, and in both books at least one of the sections is unambiguously science fiction. Mitchell, a kind of literary ventriloquist, exhibits in the same books he can write in every genre from espionage thriller to Amis-style farce, so it's no surprise that his science fiction is very, ''very'' good. You won't find his books in the science fiction section, however, or wearing their SF elements with any pride. Like Atwood, Vonnegut and Ballard, he seems to be one of those writers the publishing companies feel is too good to really be science fiction.
* Creator/HarlanEllison is willing to admit that he writes speculative fiction, but ''hates'' the term "sci-fi" to the point that he's walked out of interviews on live TV. In Ellison's defense, he has no problem with the phrases "Science Fiction" or "Fantasy", he just hates the specific term "sci fi", because (as he has explained in a couple of rants) "it's dismissive".
** He once told a young writer Paolo Bacigalupi to get out of the genre while he could. Take that as you will.
** A ''lot'' of science fiction writers (and fans) [[InsistentTerminology hate the term "sci-fi"]]. They much prefer the abbreviation "SF".
*** According to Mr. Ellison, the term sci-fi "sounds like crickets fucking".
* Creator/HPLovecraft is usually remembered as a horror writer (which is fair enough, given he popularized [[CosmicHorrorStory an entire subgenre]]. However, a lot of his later stories tended to lean more towards a sci-fi bent, with the monsters, still horrific and inhuman as ever, clearly shown to be aliens (some examples include AtTheMountainsOfMadness, TheWhispererInDarkness, TheShadowOutOfTime, and TheColourOutOfSpace) and even suggesting many of the other mythos deities (such as Cthulu, Yog-Sothoth, ect.) to be such. Despite this you will still find people who refuse to call a story like AtTheMountainsOfMadness science fiction even though it's about scientists discovering aliens and it was first published in ''a science fiction magazine'' (the same magazine that only two years later would publish [[Literature/WhoGoesThere a certain other novella]] that would be adapted into [[Film/TheThing1982 a certain horror film]].
** The same can arguably also be said for some of Lovecraft's earlier stories such as ''From Beyond'' and ''Herbert West- Reanimator'', both of which were centered around science experiments GoneHorriblyRight.
* It can be said that the best-known author of that kind of "ghetto literature" gave their work a bent that set it apart from others of the same category, often combining it with another, usually entirely different genre. Creator/JRRTolkien's body of work had actually more in common with ancient and medieval mythology (which scholars usually don't dismiss outright as frivolous or unworthy of attention) than modern fantasy , though he pretty much gave birth to that genre. Creator/HPLovecraft gave his horror stories a strong scientific-fictional bent, often writing them in the form of letters, diaries or reports. Creator/JKRowling wrote a story that at that times reads more as a boarding school/coming of age/mystery novel, where the fantasy only offers the framework. CSLewis wrote children novels that also qualified as allegories. Creator/FrankHerbert's ''Literature/{{Dune}}'' is set so far in the future that it might as well take place in an entirely different universe, and has strong fantasy elements in it. Creator/RobertAHeinlein included social criticism in his work. GeorgeOrwell's 1984 and Creator/AldousHuxley's ''Literature/BraveNewWorld'' are more comments on politics and ideology which might have been set in entirely different genres without altering the stories that much (in fact, Orwell pulled that off when writing AnimalFarm which has a lot in common with 1984, despite being the one in a sci-fi-setting and the other a fable).
* Creator/JohnRingo's works, in contrast, usually ''celebrate'' the fact they are in a SF Ghetto. He developed a good enough rapport with his publisher that, when he started writing special forces novels less Sci-Fi than Tom Clancy's, his spy novels are ''still'' found in that section.
* The author Creator/JonathanLethem wrote four books that were usually put in the science fiction section of bookstores. Then he wrote a realistic fiction work called ''Literature/MotherlessBrooklyn'' that met with great critical acclaim and won several awards. His books from before are now in the literature section. Nothing changed, besides the fact he wrote something that certainly ''wasn't'' SF.
* Creator/LarryNiven wrote an essay titled '''Ghetto? But I thought...''' which begins by exploring the concept of Science Fiction as a literary ghetto, briefly describes a REAL Ghetto, concludes that Science Fiction is actually a country club, and then proceeds to segue into telling a series of quite funny stories about science fiction conventions.
* Creator/NnediOkorafor writes fantasy stories for children and teenagers that use African settings and mythology as their basis rather than MedievalEuropeanFantasy, while still using many popular YA tropes. She's often the target of praise and panegyric for bucking the trend and bringing more diversity to literature, and many of her books feature quotes about her contributions to world literature and her timeless qualities. They often gloss over the fact that she ultimately writes fantasy (and ScienceFantasy) stories for teenagers. (However, ''Literature/AkataWitch does'' mention that the late DianaWynneJones was a fan... on the inside jacket.)
* Creator/PhilipPullman [[http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/12/12/1071125644900.html apparently buys into this]]:
-->Pullman has been compared so many times with Tolkien and Lewis, it galls him. "Despite the armoured bears and the angels, I don't think I'm writing fantasy," he says. "I think I'm writing realism. My books are psychologically real. So I would be most flattered if I was compared to George Eliot, Jane Austen or Henry James." There's a pause, and the tinkle of a wine glass. "But I don't expect anybody will."
* SF writer JohnCWright has [[http://www.scifiwright.com/2013/03/science-fiction-what-is-it-good-for/ devoted an essay to the subject]], speculating that the ghettoization came about because mainstream literature, steeped in the post-war nihilism and pessimism, felt distrustful and critical towards any work which appealed to colorful imagination.
* Creator/StanislawLem, the greatest of the greats of Eastern European ScienceFiction, has towards the end of his life displayed active hostility towards the genre, dismissing it as being about "talking dogs in flying saucers". While this might have been due to his general bitterness and disillusionment with the human race, earlier in his career he also preferred to label himself a "futurologist", and considered PhilipKDick the only author in science fiction worth his attention, a sentiment Dick didn't reciprocate[[note]]Not out of literary elitism. Dick was paranoid at this stage in life.[[/note]]. After the interview with the "talking dogs" phrase was published, some younger Polish authors expressed disappointment that their guru and source of inspiration endorses the ghettoization of the genre. On the other hand, one of those younger authors, RafalZiemkiewicz, has on many occasions spoken against labelling science fiction - and popular literature as a whole - as "worse" than high literature, arguing that popular literature is the field where many popular literary conventions are born before being picked up and embraced by the mainstream.
** On the other hand, both of them also praised the ghetto for the opportunity to hide safely from [[CommieLand the government]], and [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar get crap past the radar]]. Ziemkiewicz himself devotes himself almost entirely to politics now, for one. Even better example: another writer -- a professor of sociology -- wrote a sci-fi trilogy about the dynamics of power struggle in a failing totalitarian system because he was, for obvious reasons, unable to publish it as a scientific paper.
** When we're about subject of Poland, mainstream writer Katarzyna Grochola in one interview said she is toying with the idea of writing story set in a world with laws of physics working differently than in ours. Polish bigger speculative fiction magazine responded with short essay by it's editor-in-chief in which he pointed out that this is the definition of science-fiction and welcomed her into sf crowd, subtly mocking the tendency of mainstream writers acting like they're doing something new and innovative and refusing to admit their work are just pretty standard science-fiction or fantasy.
* Creator/StephenKing writes books involving magic, godlike beings, and aliens. He is best known as a "horror writer". While this is true (these elements are usually presented to maximize their 'horror' potential), as these elements suggest it is not the ''only'' genre he operates in, but it's notable that his most openly fantasy works, ''Literature/TheEyesOfTheDragon'' and ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'', are also his least known by the general public. (Which doubles as a case of MagnumOpusDissonance, incidentally.)
** Not only that, in most bookshops ''all'' of King's works will be in the horror section, even the ones which have no elements of horror, sci-fi or fantasy (such as ''Different Seasons''). Due in part to this, many people who are fans of completely "normal" movies like ''Film/TheShawshankRedemption'' or ''Film/StandByMe'' aren't even aware that Stephen King wrote the stories they're based on.
** King himself once had a conversation with a woman who said she didn't read horror fiction, she liked heartfelt stories like ''Film/TheShawshankRedemption.'' When King told her he had written that story, she simply said "No you didn't.'"
* TerryGoodkind will tell anyone who asks that he doesn't write fantasy, no sir. He writes deep [[AuthorTract novels of philosophical reach]]. Which, of course, no fantasy novel can be. He has gone on record as saying that fantasy is a "tired, empty genre" that he and he alone, apparently, has "inject[ed] thought into." Goodkind has repeatedly stated his opinion that fantasy, as a genre, cannot be about anything more than magic, dragons, wizards, and the like. He, on the other hand, only uses those elements to communicate important human themes, which makes him a serious novelist. We all know that [[Creator/JRRTolkien no]] [[Creator/GeorgeRRMartin other]] [[Creator/JKRowling fantasy]] [[Creator/CSLewis writer]] [[Creator/GuyGavrielKay has]] [[Creator/GuyGavrielKay ever]] [[Creator/GlenCook used]] [[Creator/RogerZelazny fantasy]] [[Creator/RobinHobb to]] [[Creator/BrandonSanderson explore]] serious subjects.
* Creator/TerryPratchett, however, ''is'' a fantasy writer and ''also'' has stuff to say. He's quoted as saying, however, that he doesn't like the term "MagicRealism", because it basically means "a polite way of saying you write fantasy and is more acceptable to certain people." He has also commented that ''all'' of his books are considered fantasy and nothing else, regardless of the other genres he dabbles in.
** He's also said that people from his publishers have told him that they've gone into bookshops and asked why his hugely successful books aren't being displayed in more prominent places. The answers amounted to "We don't like the fantasy to get out." [[note]]This is an author who has been compared to Creator/GeoffreyChaucer, Creator/CharlesDickens and MarkTwain by serious critics.[[/note]]
* This quote from the [[http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/21/books/21ballard.html?_r=1=1&sq=JG%20Ballard&st=cse New York Times obituary of J.G. Ballard]]: "His fabulistic style led people to review his work as science fiction... But that's like calling 'Literature/BraveNewWorld' science fiction, or '[[Literature/NineteenEightyFour 1984]]'."
* Works by known science fiction authors tend to be classified as science fiction even when they're not. Creator/IsaacAsimov was particularly subject to that, given the breadth of his writing. ''An Easy Introduction to the Slide Rule'' was in a local bookstore's science fiction section.
** Likewise, AndreNorton has written historical novels, spy stories, and Gothic romances. Guess where you'll find them ('''if''' you find them) in a bookstore or library (granted, at least two of the romances have fantasy elements).
** Inverted by a local public library, which had Harry Turtledove's ''Guns of the South'' (a novel about time travellers changing the outcome of the US Civil War) classed as "Historical Fiction". The cover shows Robert E. Lee holding an AK-47.
* Works of science fiction are often not considered to be science fiction if the writer is already well-known and respected for mainstream fiction. All too often, these writers [[TheyJustDidntCare don't themselves read SF]], and thus don't understand [[{{Trope}} the basic conventions of the genre]] and rarely have a sense for [[DeadHorseTrope what's been done to death]]; while they may end up writing good literary fiction--er, li-fi--they usually commit ''bad'' science fiction.
** This even applies to writers who work on obviously science-fictional projects. It's a common criticism leveled against Creator/RussellTDavies, for instance.
** ''Literature/TheTimeTravelersWife''- both the book and the film are usually listed as a romance, even though [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin the title sums up everything that makes it science fiction]]- it's about a woman who is married to a man who ''time travels''. Not only that but the way he time travels ''is'' given a scientific (if somewhat unusual) explanation without resorting to the supernatural, but best case scenario is for it to occasionally be labelled as fantasy.
** ''Literature/NeverLetMeGo'' is another novel that has at least [[http://www.amazon.com/review/R1YJZ06G89EHYE been accused of this]]. This is made hilarious when you realize it has the same plot as [[spoiler: ''{{Clonus}}'']]
** Interestingly, while Michael Crichton's works are usually under general fiction (despite all of them being somewhat sci-fi), his novel ''Timeline'', for some reason, has been seen on the Fantasy shelf all alone. Maybe because it involves modern-day people traveling back in time to what's actually a very real Middle Ages past. Apparently, if it has a knight in it, it must be fantasy.
*** Historical Fiction is in general put in the fantasy section.
*** Orson Scott Card has commented on this phenomenon. His explanation boiled down to, at least in publisher's minds, "If it has rivets, it's Sci-Fi. If it has trees, it's Fantasy."
* The {{Wuxia}} genre was also ghetto-ized, considered to be poorly-written pulpy escapist fantasy. Then JinYong came along and smashed that ghetto to bits (though anybody coming after him will have to contend with the tremendous shadow he cast).
* In ''J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century'', author Tom Shippey noted that "fantasy and the fantastic" had become the dominant literary mode of the twentieth century -- that outside the academic world, the ghetto had taken over:
---> "It is not long since I heard the commissioning editor of a major publishing house say 'Only fantasy is mass-market. Everything else is cult-fiction.' (Reflective pause.) 'That includes mainstream.'"
* Creator/GeorgeEliot expressed a more nuanced variation of this with its basis in what was lacking in the more fantastical "respectable" stories of her day, rather than a dislike of non-realistic fiction itself. She wrote in an era when it was not considered entirely proper to write about anyone other than good-looking royalty and nobility in settings with clear BlackAndWhiteMorality and a focus on courtly love/intrigue and epic conflicts. In contrast, she wrote and encouraged the reading of stories dealing with the everyday life of less attractive peasants exhibiting GreyAndGreyMorality because that was truer to real life. She also maintained that being too immersed in those idealized stories would lead their readers to become unnecessarily disdainful of the much more imperfect people they actually interacted with. Eliot has an AuthorFilibuster in ''Adam Bede'' where she delves into this argument while also saying that she doesn't want people to stop reading/writing those idealized, fantastical stories, just so long as there are also more socially realistic stories to balance them out. Of course, thanks to the changes in speculative fiction genres in the years since Eliot was alive, this isn't quite the issue it was for her, since speculative fiction stories nowadays are just as likely to have at least some of the verisimilitude that she sought.
* Ancient, Medieval and even 19th century works that would be considered science fiction, fantasy or horror if written today are routinely and unquestioningly exempted from the disdainful judgments heaped on modern examples of the genres. Creator/{{Homer}}'s ''Literature/TheOdyssey'' includes fantastic voyages on magic ships, {{hot witch}}es, {{Enthralling Siren}}s, man-eating [[OurGiantsAreBigger giants]], [[OurGodsAreGreater gods]], {{sea monster}}s and angry [[OurGhostsAreDifferent ghosts]]. ''Literature/{{Beowulf}}'' and the ''Morte d'Arthur'' have heroes, magic swords, and monsters. ''Theatre/TheTempest'' and ''Theatre/{{Macbeth}}'' have wizards and witches, ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'' has a ghost, and ''Theatre/AMidsummerNightsDream'' has TheFairFolk, {{love potion}}s, and [[BalefulPolymorph a jester who gets transmogrified into a donkey-man]]. ''Literature/{{Frankenstein}}'' is about as science fiction as they come - hard sci-fi too, by the standards of its day. Meanwhile, the tragedies of Creator/{{Sophocles}} and Creator/{{Euripides}} resound with brutal, gory killings, uncomfortable psychological horror to put Creator/StephenKing to shame, and suffering at the hands of gods every bit as alien and unfathomable as those of Creator/HPLovecraft. And then there's ''Literature/GulliversTravels'', with [[IntellectualAnimal talking horses]], [[FrazettaMan primitive humanoids]], AgeWithoutYouth, a FloatingContinent, giants, and six-inch-tall {{Lilliputians}} that [[MemeticMutation tie Gulliver down to a beach]]. It seems that if it was written before the genre was codified and named, then it can still be good and doesn't count. But once we knew what sci-fi, fantasy and horror were, then nothing fitting their description could be worthy without extreme special pleading.
* For reasons which would be difficult to explain without alluding to this trope, Creator/BarbaraHambly's HistoricalDetectiveFiction 1997 novel ''[[Literature/BenjaminJanuary A Free Man of Color]]'' was hailed by at least two reviewers as a thrilling "debut" novel ... from an author who'd been publishing fantasy and horror novels for fifteen years.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''BetterOffTed'' is an interesting example of a show that from an objective perspective is probably sci-fi, but that is almost never considered as such, and so escapes this problem entirely. To be fair, it's [[MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness very, very soft sci-fi]], but the [[VertebrateWithExtraLimbs octo-chicken]] certainly doesn't count as realistic fiction ([[NightmareFuel we hope]].)
* ''[[InvertedTrope Inverted]]'' with ''Series/{{Caprica}}'', which has experienced issues with attracting fans because it doesn't have ''[[WhatAnIdiot enough]]'' spaceships or explosions. Apparently there's no room for science fiction on television that isn't an ActionAdventure or a SpaceOpera (which, by the way, it is by some measures: it's a (good) ''SoapOpera'' *''ahem'' FamilyDrama* [[RecycledInSpace IN SPACE]]!).
** Part of its trouble is that it had picked up ''after'' ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|Reimagined}}'''s finale and the large number of disgruntled fans ''that'' produced. ''Also'' a large portion of ''Battlestar'' 's fans ''would'' have watched it for the fantastical sci-fi premise - a fleet of rag-tag ships on the run from a genocidal race of robots with, yes, plenty of spaceships and explosions, as well as the political drama. A sci-fi SoapOpera, even one set in the same universe, has a very different premise and may as well be a totally separate show altogether.
** Of course, calling a show that is better written than an average daytime soap a "soap opera" might not have been the best marketing strategy...which is why they didn't quite market it that way (the closest they got was the "family drama" terminology, the idea being to evoke ''Series/{{Dallas}}'' rather than ''Series/AllMyChildren'').
* Many viewers of ''Series/{{Charmed}}'' complain about the show's later seasons saying that it was meant to be a show about three sisters who happened to be witches and labelling the later seasons as "demon hunters who happen to live under the same roof". In something of hypocrisy, the same fans praise the third and fourth seasons despite them being more fantasy and action oriented.
** Chances are any of the show's fantasy themed episodes will be frowned upon by fans regardless of the actual plot. "A Witch's Tail" has a lengthy and interesting plot about Phoebe trying to escape from how suffocating her life has become but nope it has a mermaid, how childish.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'', although it's one of those properties about which it is practically impossible to somehow claim that it isn't science fiction (or science fantasy or what-have-you) - at least, not without completely losing all credibility - this didn't mean that the producers didn't give it their best shot; notice how in the run-up to the relaunch of the show and subsequent marketing, the producers were and have been careful to stress that the show is now more about relationships (and romantic relationships especially) than it previously was, with the whole 'adventures in time and space' which was (and is, it just has relationships on top of it) primarily the central focus downplayed. Considering that the show prior to 2005 was regarded as a creaky, slightly irrelevant old relic and post-2005 is now a major media juggernaut seemingly beloved by all - most especially critics - something obviously worked.
** In the US, ''Series/DoctorWho'' is still in the SciFiGhetto due to its checkered broadcast history. During the show's original run, Creator/{{PBS}} was its US distributor, which immediately meant that it was never going to attain a wide audience like shows on the [[Creator/{{CBS}} Big]] [[Creator/{{NBC}} Three]] [[Creator/{{ABC}} networks]]. Worse, PBS stations generally aired it only at OtakuOClock. Getting ScrewedByTheNetwork had nothing to do with the show's content, and everything to do with the fact that it was a ''British'' show; on most PBS stations it was shown in blocks with things like ''Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus'' and ''Series/AreYouBeingServed'', which always had comparatively smaller audiences in the States. The 2005 revival was even worse off in this regard, because until SciFiChannel actually decided to run the show they had the US rights to, it was only broadcast in repeats on [[TheBBC BBC America]], a network that, until quite recently, huge chunks of the country didn't even get unless they had digital cable or satellite.
*** In a business decision that can only be regarded as insane, SyFy gave up the first run rights on ''Doctor Who'' to BBC America. BBC America, who unlike SyFy seem to [[AdoredByTheNetwork genuinely love the show]], have promoted it to death and the 2008-2010 specials (which SyFy refused to air) and the first Eleventh Doctor season gave BBC America its best ratings ''ever''. Even though its easily the among the highest rated non-American shows on American television, it still isn't as ingrained in mainstream pop culture in the US as it is in Britain. The fact that its not only British, but a science fiction show, probably has something to with it.
** Whilst the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation funded the show, promoted the hell out of their involvement before the first episode, then exiled the drama to obscure timeslots and then stopped sending BBC cheques.
* One of the multiple showrunners ''[[FlashForward2009 FlashForward]]'' has had described it as "not being science fiction" but instead just being a "drama". Not only does the show have a clear sci-fi premise, the entire first half of season 1 (likely the only season) focused on the investigation into the sci-fi event.
** Not to mention it's based on a novel by Robert J. Sawyer, whose website is called sfwriter.com
* Some early reviews of ''Series/GameOfThrones'' place it squarely in the ghetto, comparing it with ''Literature/TheHobbit'' ([[SmallReferencePools naturally]]), even going so far as to claim NetworkDecay of HBO. SF / Fantasy blog io9 had a [[http://io9.com/5792574/really-why-would-men-ever-want-to-watch-game-of-thrones few things to say]] about that...
** The ''[[http://tv.nytimes.com/2011/04/15/arts/television/game-of-thrones-begins-sunday-on-hbo-review.html New York Times]]'' review is particularly guilty of this, to the point where it at times practically reads as a checklist of pretentiousness; as well as many of the other hallmarks of this trope (sniffy assumption of fantasy being inherently inferior to real-world stories, presumption that fantasy is only 'for boys', [[SmallReferencePools endless]] comparison to ''TheLordOfTheRings'' and ''DungeonsAndDragons'' because, of course, they must ''all'' be the same, and so forth), the author chides HBO for straying from its usual focus, arguing that the network is "a corporate auteur committed, when it is at its most intelligent and dazzling, to examining the way that institutions are made and how they are upheld or fall apart" and citing ''Series/TheSopranos'', ''TheWire'' and ''Series/{{Rome}}'' as examples of this. Leaving aside the fact that 'corporate auteur' is a fundamentally nonsensical contradiction-in-terms, the kicker is that except for the fact that it's set in a fantasy world instead of the real one, "the way institutions are made and how they are upheld or fall apart" is ''exactly what the show is about''.
** By this point, ''Game of Thrones'' has largely broken out of the ghetto, or invited the casual viewer in, depending on who you ask. It's seen as a fantasy series, no mistake, but has been generally accepted into mainstream pop culture. Quite a lot of fantasy geeks have pointed to the series as a sign of changing attitudes about the genre.
* Ditto with ''Series/{{Lost}}'', which is still more explicit in its combination of bizarre sci-fi elements (the present) with "realistic" drama (the "past" and "future").
** ''Lost'' fits pretty much all the requirements for [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_realism Magical Realism]].
** Since its [[TimeTravel time-travel]] heavy Seasons 4 and 5, the creators have been more vocal about categorizing ''Series/{{Lost}}'' as sci-fi, [[http://www.nj.com/entertainment/tv/index.ssf/2009/01/lost_damon_lindelof_qa.html saying]]: "You can go, "Oh, it's not a genre show, because I don't like genre shows, but I like ''Lost.'' Therefore, ''Lost'' [[NoTrueScotsman is not a genre show]]." That's the logic they apply. Well, we've been writing a genre show from the word go. We're sorry that it's getting more genre." Note though that this hasn't always squared with what they've said before or with the show's marketing (where it's usually described as a straightforward drama).
* Creator/NeilGaiman has said that while ''he'' thinks ''Literature/{{Neverwhere}}'' is fantasy, he sold it to Creator/TheBBC as "MagicalRealism", because that was the only way to get it made.
* ''NorthernExposure'' is a fantasy. It has precognitive dreams, ghosts, aliens, a man who can fly under his own power, and a large number of single-episode supernatural events that aren't so easy to categorise. People tend to look at you funny if you actually point out that it was one of the most successful fantasy programs in network television history. Lacking elves and whatnot it gets pigeonholed as MagicRealism.
* ''Franchise/StarTrek'' gets this particularly bad, with its reputation for RubberForeheadAliens and the loneliest of geek fans. Creator/PatrickStewart, for instance, one of the best actors working, has gotten several Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for his TV work... but only for "respectable" fare like ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'' and ''MobyDick'', never for his seven years on ''[[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration The Next Generation]]''. Stewart himself defies the ghetto, stating that his years of classical training were "practice" for the role of Captain Picard.
* This sad fate was part of what befell ''TheTenthKingdom''. There were people who turned it on, spotted fairy tale elements (Never mind the DeconstructorFleet) and immediately turned it off, thinking it was for kids.
* ''TerraNova'' - Creator Brannon Braga was reluctant to call his show science fiction, even though it involves future humans traveling back in time to the late Cretaceous period. For more see in [[http://dailytrojan.com/2011/01/20/tv-shows-reluctant-to-accept-sci-fi-title/ this article]].
* ''TwinPeaks'', is also written off as MagicRealism despite its heavy supernatural elements.
* In its early years, the ScifiGhetto and the FOX Network actually became connected in a lot of people's minds, probably because its debut schedule included ''Werewolf'' and its first non-sitcom hit was ''Series/TheXFiles''. People described ''X-Files'' as "a FOX-style suspense program", in such a way that "FOX" equated to "with scifi/fantasy elements". Chris Carter has tried to distance his creation from sci-fi, stating the ''The X-Files'' "takes place in the realm of extreme possibility".
* Interviews with people from ''Series/TheFortyFourHundred'' and ''[[Series/BattleStarGalacticaReimagined Battlestar Galactica]]'' insisted that their shows are "so much ''more'' than just a sci-fi show". Because apparently, science fiction doesn't involve relationships, politics, or takes on current issues.
** ''[=TV=] Guide'' justified their admiration of ''Battlestar'' by insisting, "Oh, it isn't ''really'' science fiction!"
** The New Battlestar and Caprica are described as dramas with sci fi elements by the writers, they at least are not trying to hide the science fiction, even if fans accuse them of down playing it.
* It's hard to say whether JossWhedon and his works suffer from this stigma or not. Whilst on the one hand he receives a fair amount of academic and critical praise and support, on the other his works are also prone to ExecutiveMeddling -- such as [[Series/{{Firefly}} irregular scheduling and abrupt cancellation]] or [[WonderWoman being kept in development hell]] -- and are [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer repeatedly and notably overlooked for awards]].
* Creator/NigelKneale is possibly the poster-boy for this trope. Throughout his professional and working career, he frequently and vocally expressed a disdain for science fiction; however, most of his works were either outright science fiction or heavily relied on science fiction elements and tropes. Of particular note is the ''Franchise/{{Quatermass}}'' series, which is widely credited with pretty much spearheading British television science fiction.
* ''OrphanBlack'' got hit hard with this. The show received stellar reviews (with much of the praise going to the acting) during its first season, but is consistently ignored by the major television award shows such as the {{Emmy}}s.
* Sci-fi comedies have their ''own'' ghetto-within-a-ghetto: despite the success of ''Series/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy'' and ''Series/RedDwarf'', TheBBC remain very cagey about sci-fi comedy - taking years to commission a new one in ''{{Hyperdrive}}''... which then turned out to not be very good, giving them an excuse to stop doing sci-fi comedies at all.
** Another interpretation is that ''Red Dwarf'' is an '''inversion'''. During the 1990s, the BBC made hardly any SF or fantasy due to executive hostility to the genre, and there's some reason to suspect that ''Red Dwarf'' got made because the executives thought that it was laughing '''at''' the genre and its [[BasementDweller pathetic fans]], none of whom could possibly have a sense of humour.
* ''Series/ThePrisoner'': Played straight in that star/producer. Creator/PatrickMcgoohan always denied the series was a science show, but is now averted with the series now popularly considered one of the greatest television series ever made as an profound science fiction parable, much like Creator/GeorgeOrwell's ''Literature/NineteenEightyFour''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Theatre]]
* If you would like to see desperate literary snobbery coupled with hilarious pretentiousness, why not ask a professor of Shakespeare why the ghosts and witches in ''Theatre/MacBeth'', or the fairies and angels in ''AMidsummerNightsDream'' don't qualify the plays as fantasy?
** Your results may vary - there are some professors who ''do'' believe that ''Theatre/MacBeth'' and ''AMidsummerNightsDream'' are in fact fantasy and do hold them up as an example as to how fantasy ''can'' be literature as well.
* Discussed in the bonus cast interviews on the AudioPlay/BigFinishDoctorWho audio story ''[[Recap/BigFinishDoctorWho099SonOfTheDragon Son of the Dragon]]''. Guest actor Creator/DouglasHodge, whose best-known work has been on the stage, notes that science fiction is a genre virtually untouched by theatre aside from the odd musical or comedy, even though the medium is often receptive to challenging intellectual/political material otherwise. He agrees with the interviewer that "snobbery" towards the genre is likely the issue, and that while readers and movie/TV viewers are willing to take sci-fi stories seriously, theatre audiences would be likely to snicker instead. (Hodge also ponders whether something like ''Literature/NineteenEightyFour'' should be counted as science fiction -- see Literature above.)
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''VideoGame/MightAndMagic'' offers a strange example. Although the CRPG series were heavily into sci-fi (hand to hand with heroic fantasy), this was not obvious for the turn-based strategy titles, VideoGame/HeroesOfMightAndMagic. Thus, when the third installment of the series attempted to insert a faction called "Forge", containing sci-fi elements of the interconnected RPG series, the fans were so displeased that the developers [[http://www.heroesofmightandmagic.com/heroes3ab/forgetown.shtml even received death threats (!)]] which resulted in the faction been scrapped.
* When learning the writing skill in ''[[VideoGame/TheSims The Sims 3]]'', the Sim in question will learn a different genre at each skill level (at level 0, they can only write fiction and non-fiction). At level 1, the Sims learns to write science fiction. At level 2, they learn the "trashy" genre. That's right, according the ''[[VideoGame/TheSims The Sims 3]]'', trashy novels are harder to write than science fiction.
** FridgeBrilliance: Writing a good novel is always easier than intentionally writing a SoBadItsGood trashy novel, instead of just trashy trite, like the novels they're probably writing at level 0.
* Video games in general tend not to suffer from this, and indeed most of the truly successful (non-sports based) games of the past decade have had at least faint hints of science fiction or fantasy, and many of them have been openly and unashamedly embracing of it. This may perhaps be to do with the fact that the medium is suffering from its own ghetto, and that it has until recently been primarily the preserve of the type of people who tend to also be interested in science-fiction and fantasy.
** However, the spaceship simulation genre has suffered since the 90s, with barely a new release per year. More recently, with the advent of {{Kickstarter}}, the genre is trying to have its revival with campaigns such as [[VideoGame/StarCitizen a new project]] by Chris Roberts of ''VideoGame/WingCommander'' fame, [[http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1461411552/elite-dangerous a new]] ''VideoGame/{{Elite}}'' game, a TransformingMecha [[http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/43153532/strike-suit-zero space combat game]] and the already-released ''[[VideoGame/FTLFasterThanLight FTL]]''. {{Steam}}'s friendliness to indie developers has proven a boon to the genre.
** The fact that the vast majority of video games are speculative fiction is why developers started to make a larger number of realistic, down-to-earth games around TheNewTens, in order to diversify the medium. While this isn't really itself a result of the ghetto (many of said developers are already famous for popular speculative fiction games), many of the reviews of these games have hints of the same snobbery that gets applied to speculative fiction in other mediums; from the way certain critics go on about ''VideoGame/GoneHome'', for instance, you'd think it was the first game to have EmotionalTorque.
* [[InvertedTrope Inverted]] during the funding drive for ''VideoGame/KingdomComeDeliverance''. After coming up with a prototype version of the game, Warhorse Studios tried to pitch the game to big-name publishers, but they were repeatedly told "Your game is too niche. There’s no magic. People want wizards and dragons." Exacerbated in part because they ''did'' admit to modelling many of the mechanics on fantasy games like ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim'' and ''VideoGame/TheWitcher''. This is why they decided to go to Kickstarter despite having a wealthy private backer, in order to prove that there ''is'' a market for a realistic, historical medieval game such as this one.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' has an odd history with this. Most people accept that it's some nuanced mix of sci-fi and fantasy, but some absolutely refuse to classify it as that. It's kind of silly. To be fair, Homestuck is [[GenreBusting really hard to classify]].
* ''Webcomic/LastRes0rt'' ''embraces'' its Science-Fiction moniker, because the author discovered that as bad as the ScifiGhetto might be, there was an even worse one to avoid; the FurryComic Ghetto, which has [[RuleThirtyFour a whole different set of stereotypes]].
* ''Webcomic/MenageA3'' has a serious example of in-universe self-ghettoisation. The geeky Gary gets a free trip to Paris with a sexually voracious fashion model -- and his idea of fun there is to dive into a ''computer games shop''.
* Webcomics are quite different to the mainstream media on this front. Several long-running and influential comics are unashamedly sci-fi (eg. ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary, Webcomic/StarslipCrisis''), and even more are fantasy (''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick, Webcomic/EightBitTheater, Webcomic/GirlGenius, DominicDeegan..''. see NotableFantasyWebcomics). The webcomic audience is on the whole geekier than most other media, so most readers are aware that FunctionalMagic or MadScience doesn't preclude nuanced characters, moving scenes, or gripping storytelling.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Alicorn's [[http://alicorn.elcenia.com/stories/earthfic.shtml Earthfic]] is a short story that inverts this -- society no longer takes seriously works that don't have speculative elements, to the consternation of the protagonist.
* Nyrath's [[http://www.projectrho.com/rocket/ Atomic Rockets pages]] are one of the best resources available on the web for the [[SoYouWantTo/WriteAHardScienceFictionStoryWithSpaceTravel aspiring hard science fiction writer]], detailing real-world spacecraft designs (both ones that have really flown and those on the drawing board), issues with extraterrestrial colonies, how a war in space might actually be fought, etc.. Yet even on these hallowed pages, a form of the SciFiGhetto occasionally appears. Sometimes when a proposed technology simply could not work in the real universe -- due to violating Einsteinian relativity or conservation of momentum or whatnot -- the site labels it as "pure science fiction."
* Since the TrueArt attitude--more specifically, the sometimes arrogant and superior attitudes it may inspire--are one of {{SF Debris}}'s {{Berserk Button}}s, he has sometimes ranted on this trope in reviews of particular works that sometimes get this attitude. He also sometimes points out sometimes complex and subtle literary references, as well as great story writing in those works that often get dismissed as standard sci-fi shlock.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* The "As Others See Us" column in Creator/DavidLangford's ''[[http://news.ansible.co.uk/ Ansible]]'' newsletter is filled with this stuff.
* JamesRolfe discusses the "horror ghetto" in his ''Exorcist II: The Heretic'' review, discussing how ''Film/TheExorcist'' was one of those rare horror movies that managed to get nominated for (and actually ''win'') awards. He mentions several movies such as ''Film/TheHurtLocker'' who have been given awards, then says "put some zombies and vampires into those movies and see how many awards ''they'' get."
** Of course, there are neither zombies nor vampires in ''The Exorcist'', which may or may not have been a factor in its success. With the exception of perhaps ''two'' George Romero films, probably only [[Film/NightOfTheLivingDead one]], "zombie movies" are considered the epitome of "brainless lowest-common-denominator {{Gorn}} movie". Vampire movies are seldom considered much better, with recent [[Literature/{{Twilight}} developments in the subgenre]] certainly not helping.
* Many scifi fans are familiar with walking past row after row of mystery and romance novels in bookstores both new and used to find a single row or a tiny shelf of "Scifi/Fantasy". There is actually more scifi and fantasy in the store than on the shelf, the reader just has to manually search for it in the other stacks.
** Likewise, fans of Horror novels have had to walk around the same section.
** Genres themselves can be quite subjective - for example, ''HardBoiledWonderlandAndTheEndOfTheWorld'' is normally placed around "Literature", but it's a simultaneous Pastoral Fantasy and {{Cyberpunk}}.
** Many book stores have it set up so that there's a "nerd ghetto" with the science fiction, fantasy, manga, and comics, along with rulebooks and dice for various TabletopGames, all collected in one corner of the store.
* Most collegiate [[InNameOnly creative]] fiction classes expressly deny the option to write anything other than "literary" fiction. You might hear a variety of reasons for this, ranging from the idea that "genre" fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, horror) cares more about setting and mood than plot and characterization, or simply that the class is designed specifically to focus on literary fiction and you should go and take the genre fiction class instead. Hilariously, the same classes will often go on to teach ''Literature/SlaughterhouseFive'' in the same session. Literary fiction was always a stodgy, artificial distinction anyways. On a similar note, many Masters of Fine Arts (MFA) programs, the terminal degree for creative writing, will not admit "genre writers." This has led critics of this attitude to say that the "creative" part of "creative writing" is a misnomer, since you're only allowed to be creative within a certain box.
** Veronica Roth, the author of the popular [[YoungAdultLiterature young adult]] series ''Literature/{{Divergent}}'', once recalled in her blog about how a professor in her creative writing class had said that writing fantasy would be like an easy vacation compared to "real writing". She also recounted how surprised her fellow students were whenever she told them that she wanted to write commercial genre YA, with them asking if she was just trying to get her bills paid.
** Believe it or not, there are actually movements in universities to try ''averting'' these -- some professors believe that Pulp magazines and popular and contemporary fiction should still be critically studied the same way other works are, especially since [[DoubleStandard mythology and fairy tales sometimes get a free pass]]. China Miéville has also written an essay saying that science fiction ''should'' be considered equal to literature because many of them include a rational discourse of scientific literature.
* This was why the American Creator/SciFiChannel changed its name to [[http://www.syfy.com/press.html "SyFy"]], because [=SyFy=] as a name "more clearly captures the mainstream appeal of the world's biggest entertainment category, and reflects the network's ongoing strategy to create programming that's more accessible and relatable to new audiences." The importance of the female viewer demographic is usually noted due to the popularized notion of their low regard towards science fiction. The name [=SyFy=] can also be trademarked, in contrast to "Sci-Fi," which is a generic, pre-existing term. Many critics accused the channel of trying to distance themselves from negative stereotypes of science fiction.
** The Canadian equivalent channel, "Space", has also undergone a re-branding of its own. While it kept the name, the channel will now focus on "down-to-earth" shows, with its new slogan being "It's all around you" (i.e. a reminder to the audience that "Space" doesn't need to mean ''outer'' space with silly space-ships and such). One of the channel's marketing people has said: "This idea that sci-fi is people in polyester onesies running around with taser guns, that’s not what the genre is about anymore… It’s a lot more mainstream now."
[[/folder]]
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