annotated bibliography

lance olsen
© 1992


Aldiss, Brian W. Trillion Year Spree: The History of Science Fiction. London: Gollancz Ltd., 1986. Brief entry on Gibson that salutes his dazzling style and attacks his amoral characters.

Alkon, Paul. "Deus Ex Machina in William Gibson's Cyberpunk Trilogy." Paper delivered at Fiction 2000 conference at the University of Leeds, June 28-July 1, 1989. Gibson combines such genres as the gothic and the mimetic in a Bakhtinian dialogic relationship.

Benford, Gregory. "Is Something Going On?" Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 18-23. Attack upon cyberpunk as more marketing strategy than literary movement.

Breton, André. "Surrealism." The Modern Tradition. Ed. Richard Ellmann and Charles Feidelson, Jr. New York: Oxford UP,1965. The proto-cyberpunk surrealist manifesto.

Brin, David. "Starchilde Harold, Revisited." Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 23-27. Ambivalent statement about Cyberpunk's style, vision, and tendency toward self-promotion.

Brunner, John. The Shockwave Rider. New York: Ballantine, 1975. Key proto-cyberpunk novel heavily influenced by Toffler and featuring computer hackers.

Csicsery-Ronay, Istvan. "Cyberspace." American Book Review 10.6 (January-February 1989): 7. Mildly negative rev. of MLO.

------------------------. "Cyberpunk and Neuromanticism." Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 266-78. Ambivalent interrogation of cyberpunk, which Csicery-Ronay views as the apotheosis of postmodernism.

Delany, Samuel R.. "Is Cyberpunk a Good Thing or a Bad Thing?" Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 28-35. Intelligent weighing of pros and cons concerning the cyberpunk controversy, with reference to Gibson in particular.

Disch, Thomas M. "Mona Lisa Overdrive." New York Times Book Review (December 11 1988): 23. Generally positive rev. of MLO.

Devillers, Carole. "Haiti's Voodoo Pilgrimages: Of Spirits and Saints." National Geographic (March 1985): 395-410. Source for much of the voodoo material Gibson used in CZ and MLO.

Dorsey, Candas Jane. "Beyond Cyberspace." Books in Canada (June-July 1988): 11-13. Fine general profile of Gibson.

Farber, Manny. "White Elephant Art and Termite Art." Negative Space. New York: Praeger Publishers, Inc., 1971. One of the few essays Gibson claims directly influenced his aesthetics.

Gilmore, Mikal. "The Rise of Cyberpunk." Rolling Stone (December 4, 1986): 77. Predictable intro to Gibson and his universe.

Hamburg, Victoria. "The King of Cyberpunk." Interview (January 1989): 84-87, 91. Good interview focusing on MLO and Gibson's sense of the future.

Harper, Leanne C. "The Culture of Cyberspace." The Bloomsbury Review 8.5 (September/October 1988): 16-17, 30. Strong interview focusing on influences and work-in-progress.

Kelly, Kevin. "Cyberpunk Era." Whole Earth Review (Summer 1989): 78-83. Pastiche of earlier reviews of Gibson and a good cyberpunk reading list by Richard Kadrey.

Kessel, John. "The Humanist Manifesto." Science Fiction Eye. 1.1 (Winter 1987): 52-56. Provocative "humanist" response to cyberpunk.

Kincaid, Paul. "Mona Lisa Overdrive." Times Literary Supplement (August 12 1988): 892. Luke-warm review of MLO, indicative of the novels critical reception.

Leary, Timothy. "High Tech High Life -- William Gibson & Timothy Leary In Conversation." Mondo 2000 7 (Fall 1989): 58-64. Good discussion of William Burroughs, Douglas Adams, Thomas Pynchon, characterization, and drugs by the man whom Leary calls "Quark of the Decade."

MacNair, Marian. "Mainframe Voodoo." Montreal Mirror (April-7-20, 1989): 23. Standard profile of Gibson and his work through MLO.

Maddox, Tom. "Cobra, She Said: An Interim Report on the Fiction of William Gibson." Fantasy Review 9.4 (April 1986): 46-48. One of the first more serious critical looks into the essence of Gibson's fiction.

McCaffery, Larry. "An Interview with William Gibson." Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 217-36. Excellent and broad interview with much emphasis on influences, early career, and aesthetics.

------------------, ed. "The Cyberpunk Controversy." Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988). First-rate and balanced special issue on cyberpunk in general, Gibson in particular. Essays, stories, and comments by SF writers such as Delany, Rucker, and Sterling; critics such as Brooks Landon, George Slusser, and Istvan Csicsery-Ronay.

McGuirk, Carol. "The 'New' Romancers: Science Fiction Innovators from Gernsback to Gibson." Paper delivered at Fiction 2000 conference at the University of Leeds, June 28-July 1, 1989. Places Gibson in the context of hard and soft SF.

Nicholas, Joseph and Judith Hanna. "William Gibson." Interzone 1.13 (1985): 17-18. Good early interview which by now covers familiar territory.

Pohl, Frederick. Untitled. Mississippi Review 16.2 & 3 (1988): 46. Attack upon cyberpunk's disagreeable characters.

Porush, David. "Cybernauts in Cyberspace: William Gibson's Neuromancer." Aliens: The Anthropology of Science Fiction. Ed. George C. Slusser and Eric Rabkin. Carbondale: Southern Illinois UP, 1987. Exploration of distinction between man and machine, with particularly interesting material on scientific advances in real cyberspace.

Pynchon, Thomas. Gravity's Rainbow. New York: Viking, 1973. The cyberpunk classic.

Rirdan, Danny. "The Works of William Gibson." Foundation 43 (Summer 1988): 36-46. One of the first in-depth evaluations of Gibson's fiction, with some fine work on style and apparent slips in Gibson's knowledge of technology (which Gibson has tried to refute).

Sterling, Bruce. "Preface." Mirrorshades: The Cyberpunk Anthology. New York: Arbor House, 1986. The cyberpunk manifesto by the self-proclaimed cyberpunk spokesperson in the first and definitive collection of short cyberpunk fiction.

Tallant, Robert. Voodoo In New Orleans. New York: Collier Books, 1962. Gibson read this book, first published in 1946, when a teenager in Virginia. A major source for his voodoo material.

Tatsumi, Takayuki. "An Interview with William Gibson." Science Fiction Eye 1.1 (Winter 1987): 6-17. Strong interview with Gibson in which Tom Maddox and others play a major role.

Toffler, Alvin. The Third Wave. New York: William Morrow, 1980. Although Gibson never read it, Bruce Sterling refers to this as the Bible of cyberpunk. A generally optimistic sociological study of the future that argues the new society will be based on decentralization and fluidity.