Clarke's Laws (UNCLASSIFIED)

Jeff Prucher jprucher at YAHOO.COM
Tue Sep 8 21:20:49 UTC 2009

----- Original Message ----
> From: "Baker, John" <JMB at STRADLEY.COM>

> 1. _Playboy_ (January 1968).
> 2. _2001: A Space Odyssey_ (Stanley Kubrick and
> Arthur C. Clarke, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer,
> April 1968).
> 3. A. C. Clarke, _The Promise of Space_ (Harper
> & Row, New York, 1968).>>
>         It isn't clear to me whether Clarke meant this to be the
> introduction of his Third Law.  I've seen 2001 (which I believe does not
> contain these words), but not The Promise of Space or the January 1968
> issue of Playboy.

The SF Citations site also references a 1972 transcription of a lecture given in May, 1967, which may be the ultimate source of the third law.

Google Books has "The Promise of Space" in snippet view; no searches I've run come up with anything resembling the third law. The article in Playboy was titled "When Earthman and Alien Meet", and does not appear to have been reprinted.

Jeff Prucher

Editor, Brave New Words: The Oxford Dictionary of Science Fiction. Now in paperback!

The American Dialect Society -

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