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Abstract

In his paper, "Science Fiction, Forbidden Planet, and Shakespeare's The Tempest," Simone Caroti illustrates the way in which Cyril Hume and Fred Wilcox's 1956 science fiction movie Forbidden Planet -- whose plot is inspired by Shakespeare's Tempest -- reconfigures in Shakespeare's play. Caroti begins by defining the genre of science fiction and explaining its attraction for modern audiences. Following Darko Suvin's notions of science fiction, Caroti highlights the theme of cognitive estrangement and shows how Forbidden Planet offers a cultural translation of this theme in The Tempest. The result of Caroti's analysis is to read Prospero and his magic in contemporary terms: the film translates Shakespeare's sense of wonder and the conflict between the rational interpretive self and the forces of the irrational into a search for truth and an understanding of the place of humanity in the universe.

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