R.U.R. was first performed in Prague in January 1921 and was such a success that an English-language adaptation was on Broadway in 1922.
By 1923, the play had been translated into thirty languages. By the end of that decade, the Oxford English Dictionary defined "robot" as "a machine capable of carrying out a complex series of actions automatically."
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Karel Čapek first thought of calling his artificial people "labors," but was not satisfied and turned to his brother Josef for advice. Josef suggested the Czech word "robota," which referred to a system of forced serf labour.
When Čapek wrote R.U.R., he was known as one of the leading anti-fascist commentators of the 1930s. His writing, ideas, style, and attitude brought him to the attention of the Nazis, who named him "public enemy number two" in Czechoslovakia.
Science fiction emerged about 300 years ago when science made great strides. Authors tried to understand their world by imagining a possible future.
Gulliver's Travels is the earliest science fiction. This satirical 1726 travel narrative is considered to be a precursor of the modern science fiction novel. Lemuel Gulliver encounters utopian and dystopian societies during his voyages. The novel describes scientists on islands whose experiments are pointless.
.. was a pseudonymous patient of psychoanalyst Robert Lindner, in his 1954 case studies, in which the patient had a dual life, which he could switch by mental time-travel and travel in an instant to the far off future, in which a life of power, respect and conquest was lived by him. This premise was a form of ‘escape hatch’, making science fiction literature a kind of evasion from reality.