Samuel R. Delany

Exploring cultural speculation through science fiction literature.

April 1, 1942

One of science fiction's most influential authors and critics, Samuel R. Delany became famous as a youthful prodigy when he published his first novel, The Jewels of Aptor (1962), at the age of twenty.

In 1967, after several more celebrated novels, Delany helped ring in the New Wave of science fiction with short stories emphasizing cultural speculation, the soft sciences, and mythology, as opposed to technology and the hard sciences. Written in this vein, the short story “Aye, and Gomorrah...” (1967) won a Nebula Award, and the novelette, “Time Considered as a Helix of Semi-Precious Stones” (1969) won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards.

Amongst works including the best seller Dhalgren (1975) and the Neveryon series (1979–1987), Delany increasingly returned to critical and academic writing. In 1985, he received the Pilgrim Award for excellence in science fiction criticism.

2002 Inductee