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Animating the Science Fiction Imagination$
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J.P. Telotte

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190695262

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190695262.001.0001

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Flights of Fantasy

Flights of Fantasy

Chapter:
(p.23) Chapter 2 Flights of Fantasy
Source:
Animating the Science Fiction Imagination
Author(s):

J.P. Telotte

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190695262.003.0002

This chapter focuses on pre-war animation’s fascination with space travel and the various vehicles used in flights to the moon, Mars, and elsewhere. It offers background on several of the highly publicized developments in this area: in rocketry, ballon ascents, and airplane flight, as exemplified by the work of Robert Goddard, the ascents of Auguste Piccard, and the flights of Charles Lindbergh. These scientific developments provided the inspiration for a number of cartoons that sought both to capitalize on the excitement that attended such events and to satirize their accomplishments. The chapter’s primary focus, though, in on the rocket, which becomes a key image for most space-oriented cartoons of the period. Part of its impact, the chapter suggests, lies in the image’s ability to evoke the larger work of the cartoon, especially its function as an “animatic apparatus,” able to take viewers on various imagined extraordinary voyages.

Keywords:   rocket, space, animation, Jules Verne, balloon, Mars, realism, multiplane, modernism, technology

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