Please Support Clarkesworld via Patreon or with a Digital Subscription.

Science Fiction & Fantasy








February 2017 ISSUE

Frodo Is Dead: Worldbuilding and The Science of Magic

In 1966, Time magazine asked, “Is God Dead?” on its infamous April cover. Around the same time, a piece of graffiti began appearing in New York subways: Frodo Lives! It was an interesting crossroads for America—God seemed to be fading out of the lives of many Americans, while Tolkien’s masterpiece was just starting to find [...]

July 2016 ISSUE

Paradise Lost: A History of Fantasy and the Otherworld

If primal fear forms one pole of the fantasy genre, paradise forms the other. But from the tales that built the genre to the writers who resurrected it after each of its deaths, the narrative that plays itself over and over across time and geography is one of paradise lost. To understand the history of [...]

August 2013 ISSUE

The Candlelit World: The Dark Roots of Myth and Fantasy

Folklore and legends are part of a legacy of primal fear that begins at the dawn of humanity, when the world seemed to be dominated by the supernatural: the woods, the hills, the mountains, and the rivers were the domains of old, unseen things, and living meant living in their shadow. Candles illustrated man’s deepest [...]