The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

This series of novels was published in a period of four years with the series title Canopus in Argos prominently displayed on each. Although the novels contain no major continuing characters, they are all set in the context of competing ideologies. The series is connected through the repetition of ideas rather than a developing plot or continuing characters. Philosophical in content and in structure, the novels tell a future history and recast events of the past, such as the legend of Atlantis. All the novels emphasize that humans and beings on other worlds must learn the importance of unity in order to correct problems in their societies. In Re: Colonised Planet 5, Shikasta, human beings discover the importance of mental powers. The human race possesses great powers, but it is unsure of how to use them. Losing its creator, the space empire Canopus, causes Earth to have seasons and its inhabitants to devolve. Canopean agents try to redeem Earth, and they appear under the guise of alternative science or magic. Unfortunately, only a few people hear and heed the Canopean message. As a result of human neglect of unification, an apocalypse occurs.

In The Marriage Between Zones Three, Four, and Five, the queen of a feminist utopian society (Zone Three) marries the leader of Zone Four, a patriarchal warrior society. The novel shows her struggle to accept a man who has completely different values. No mention is made of Earth or of the...

(The entire section is 436 words.)