Classification of Science Fiction Books

John Thiel III

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I wonder if there exists a science fiction book classification which compiles lists of sf books on a certain theme, for example, medical science fiction, military science fiction, and then with sub-categories, medical would have transplants, augmentations, brain surgery, and so on. I'd like to find similar books in many categories and they'd be easy to locate if they were classified.
 

John Thiel III

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Is there any classification kept of themes in science fiction? Like, medical science fiction, military science fiction? I'd like one that breaks down into subcategories, as with, medical: transplants, artificial organs, augmentations, brain surgery, and so on.
 

Extollager

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Hmm--I don't know of a system that goes into this degree of specification.
 

J-Sun

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The ISFDB contains zillions of books and many of them are tagged (and you can search by tag) but it's very hit or miss. The SFE also has a lot of theme articles which list many related books but just tends to hit what it thinks are the high notes. Those are the closest examples I know of to what I think you're asking about.
 

Vertigo

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I must admit this is something I would like but have never found. I do it with my own database of books I've read but that's not much use for finding new books!
 

Cathbad

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Is there any classification kept of themes in science fiction? Like, medical science fiction, military science fiction? I'd like one that breaks down into subcategories, as with, medical: transplants, artificial organs, augmentations, brain surgery, and so on.

That would be quite an undertaking!
 

Vertigo

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I think that's the biggest problem. It's relatively easy to do as an on going process but immensely difficult to do retrospectively.
 

John Thiel III

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I have heard of there being such classified studies, but haven't found any. Way back, some people in the N3F were talking of doing this.
 

Vertigo

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I have noticed that with ebooks that I download nowadays they typically have a bunch of tags that come with them that Calibre picks up as "Topics" but they are pretty useless for what you're after. They typically include things like "Science Fiction" and maybe sub genres like "Steam punk" then they might have the author but also, bizarrely, the isbn! Sometimes they go down to details like "Military." But it's all pretty random and of course every book has slightly different tags. So one SF book might have "Military" and another one "Military Science Fiction" and another one "Military SF" and so on. All of which makes them pretty much useless so, as I said, I put my own in and refine them after I've read the book.
 

John Thiel III

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I think examination of science fiction as a whole is pretty rare, though there have been a few studies of the field. But I wish there were more. I'd like to have lists of all the stories of various types that have appeared in Asimov's, for instance. I should do it myself, I suppose. But I lack that kind of time. Maybe the computer has put me in mind of it, there's a lot of classification that goes on there, but it isn't from the literary perspective.
 

Vertigo

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I find the best way of finding a very specific book in a particular sub-genre, is to ask someone like chrispenycate, Vertigo or J-Sun, to be honest. Many others on here too, I don't mean to omit all the other experts. I suggest you use Chrons as a pseudo-software database for SFF!
You are too kind but I see most others here (including your good self) as being far more knowledgeable than myself. I can only aspire to their level.:oops:
 

J-Sun

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Thank you, Bick, but what Vertigo said. :) Adopting Asimov's "cheerful self-appreciation," I will say I know some stuff about some things but a lot of people have a lot wider or deeper knowledge (or both) or at least have a better memory. :) But, yeah, if you add us all together, I think the Chrons makes a heck of a group-mind.
 

Danny McG

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In at least three online libraries that I frequent they have Asimov's Black Widowers books tagged as science fiction... that really annoys me - I have to forcefully resist the urge to sharpen my axe and go a hunting the compilers
 

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