The idea of creating an artificial human is an old one. One of the earliest science-fictional novels, Frankenstein, concerned itself primarily with the hubris of creation, and one’s relationship to one’s creator. Later versions of this “artificial human” story (and indeed later adaptations of Frankenstein) changed the focus to more modernist questions… What is the nature of humanity? What does it mean to be human?
These stories continued through the golden age of science fiction with Isaac Asimov’s I Robot story cycle, and then through post-modern iterations from new wave writers like Philip K. Dick. Today, this compelling science fiction trope persists in mass media narratives like Westworld and Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner, as well as twenty-first century science fiction novels like Charles Stross’s Saturn's Children and Paolo Bacigalupi’s The Windup Girl.
The short stories in More Human than Human demonstrate the depth and breadth of artificial humanity in contemporary science fiction. Issues of passing . . . of what it is to be human . . . of autonomy and slavery and oppression, and yes, the hubris of creation; these ideas have fascinated us for at least two hundred years, and this selection of stories demonstrates why it is such an alluring and recurring conceit.
SubtitleStories of Androids, Robots, and Manufactured Humanity
AuthorEdited by Neil Clarke
ImprintNight Shade Books
Published7 November 2017
Dimensions6.00 x 9.00in.
About the author
Neil Clarke is the award-winning publisher and editor in chief of Clarkesworld magazine, winner of three Hugo Awards for Best Semiprozine, and anthologist of the annual The Best Science Fiction of the Year from Night Shade Books. He is also the editor of Galactic Empires, and the cyborg-themed original anthology Upgraded.
“The best of the stories gathered here by five-time Hugo nominee Clarke (founder and editor of Clarkesworld magazine) use the tropes of androids and artificial intelligence for multifaceted interrogations of humanity and society . . . Overall high quality.”—Publishers Weekly
“Emotionally compelling and intellectually engaging stories that challenge traditional notions of AI and how we might interact with it in the future. Even as someone who reads in this genre often, this reviewer was pleasantly surprised at the unexpected ways the theme of artificial intelligence was integrated into these pieces.” —Library Journal