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The question of whether Vance was dead or not became more than academic when he found himself in a bathtub up to his chin in ice water like some forgotten cocktail garnish, a demonic woman standing over him, and no memory of how he got there.
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Read free chapters of The Red Rook here (or get it here). -- Fritz Freiheit

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Why kids can learn more from tales of fantasy than realism (link)

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A large body of literature in psychology has shown that the more similar the learning context is to the context where the information is eventually going to be applied, the better. This strongly suggests that the realistic books should have helped children learn the meanings of words better and report them more accurately on the post-test. But our study showed exactly the opposite: the fantasy books, the ones that were less similar to reality, allowed children to learn more.

https://aeon.co/ideas/why-kids-can-learn-more-from-tales-of-fantasy-than-realism
Source:

http://www.thepassivevoice.com/2016/06/why-kids-may-learn-more-from-tales-of-fantasy-than-realism/

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I've always felt that fantasy, and this includes science fiction, presents a richer learning environment than realistic fiction. But then I'm biased.

Update: I'll take a swing at interpreting the value of fantasy (including SF) as a superior learning environment to realistic fiction. First, I think anything that challenges readers to learn new words or to put words into new contexts is a plus for learning. Second, the process of reading fantasy and SF requires an ongoing interpretation of the words. As each word is consumed, the reader must adjust their understanding of what they have read. With fantasy and SF the reader must adjust more often and more radically. Again, this provides superior mental exercise than realistic fiction. (See this excellent essay by Samuel Delany: About Five Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty Words ) Thirdly, the ability to develop and understand complex models of the world, or, in the case SF and fantasy, a world, is an excellent skill. It is far better to conduct, at least initially, experiments on mental models than to be forced to try things out in the real world ("hmmm, if we institute policy X, what will the impact on society be?" should be a familiar theme to any SF reader). I know there are more, but I'll let it go here.



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