GOTSCHALK, Felix C.
(1929-)
   US writer and psychologist who began publishing sf with "Outer Concentric" and "The Examination" for New Dimensions 4 (anth 1974) ed Robert SILVERBERG. In a relatively short time he established a reputation as an author of high linguistic energy whose stories emoted a ruthless savvy about the future. Many of his tales are narrated through stunning linguistic displays of the emotional and physiological ways of being that humans display in isolation and in their relations to the social world; these ways of being are constantly articulated by the protagonists in a flow of brilliant jargon, with the result that existence and the LINGUISTIC perception of existence become identical. The effect isexhilarating and also rather terrifying. FCG's first novel, Growing Up in Tier 3000 (1975), is set in a world very similar to that of many of thetales, and deploys a similarly searching sense of the surface of events and of identities, though its plot moves with some difficulty: in an energy-quarantined, savagely competitive, complexly automated DYSTOPIAN future society, young children show their readiness to take over from their elders (in a reductio ad absurdum of the Whorfian hypothesis that language structure determines our conceptualization of the world) by understanding the languages necessary for survival in the hyperkinetic new. At least two further novels have been written and await publication; but the aggressive ingenuity of his style, and the oddly high-strung gallantry of his attitude to the futures in store for the human race - that they are to be endured with grace, but never "won" - make his work unlikely to reach a wide market.
   JC
   See also: CITIES; FABULATION; TABOOS.

Science Fiction and Fantasy Encyclopedia. . 2011.

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