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International Science Fiction Magazine, editor : Frederik Pohl

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International Science Fiction : „A new science fiction magazine with a new concept in publishing : each issue will be filled with stories by Foreign Authors. Will give American readers a chance to read the science fiction stories by Authors popular in the rest of the world. Written and translated by the top writers throughout the world.” – Frederik Pohl

The International Science Fiction Magazine had unfortunately only two issues, November 1967 and June 1968. Published by Galaxy Publishing Corp and edited by Frederik Pohl. Was probably the first (and the only one ?) US SF Magazine having this concept, to introduce to the american readers, european science fiction and rest of the world science fiction.

It had published translated short stories from France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Austria, Russia, Chile and India and english language stories from UK and Australia. European SF writers as Arkady and Boris Strugatsky, Ilya Varshavsky, Anatoly Dneprov, Genrikh Altov, Yeremey Parnov, Mikhail Yemtsev, Helmuth W. Mommers, Ernst Vleck, Claus Felber, Nathalie Henneberg, Michel Ehrwein, Juliette Raabe, Gust Gils, Luigi Cozzi, F. C. Gozzini, Alessandro Mussi, Hugo Correa and Sridhar Rao, were for the first time presented to the american readers and fans.

Why it has failed ?

Lester del Rey in its editorial (“The Balance of Ideas”) from the second issue of The International Science Fiction Magazine is answering to that question :

“Nevertheless, there is a barrier which no government regulations can change that lets ideas flow away from us more easily than towards us. That barrier is the English language, whose very excellence as a tool for ideas works against us. Every other language has a large educated class who can read and translate English; but those who learn English first seldom bother to master any other language.

As a result, our stories are sent to large numbers of fans and translators all over the world, while our own authors and fans seldom get even a hint of the work being done in our field by others.

We’re in serious danger of becoming the most provincial science fiction readers – and writers – on earth.

Of course, it’s easy to fall back on the provincial assurance that we are leaders in science fiction and that only our ideas are worth having, so that we need no influx of ideas from outside.

Our history doesn’t seem to bear that out, however.

Of course, the great ideas will cross any barrrier, in time. If a man writes a great break-through novel of science fiction in High Trollish, we’ll get a translation of it – eventually.

One never knows. Who could have guessed that a word in a play with the odd title of “R.U.R.” would lead to the Asenion laws of robotics ?

The basic ideas that delighted us for decades came from all over. H.G.Wells gave us time travel in English ; Jules Verne took us into space in French ; better ships came from several writers in German ; and Karel Capek gave us the word robot from Czech, as well as one of the first novels of atomic doom.

The early issues of the first science fiction magazines were filled with translations from many languages. Our wellsprings are universal, which probably accounts for our almost universal appeal.” – Lester Del Rey
 

International Science Fiction no.1/November 1967

Editor : Frederik Pohl, Associate Editor : Judy-Lynn Benjamin, Art Director : Jack Gaugan, Publisher : Robert M. Guinn

Contents

Editorial: “SF Film Festival” by Frederik Pohl

Special Feature: [From the Planet Earth] “Science Fiction Around the World”.
What’s new in science fiction as reported by Our Men in Germany, Italy and the U.S.S.R.

Germanyby Walter Ernsting 

Germany: “The Epsilon Problem” by Helmuth W. Mommers & Ernst Vleck, translated by Harry Warner, Jr.

Germany: “Monster” by Helmuth W. Mommers & Ernst Vleek, translated by Harry Warner, Jr.

France: “Uranus” by Michel Ehrwein, translated by Damon Knight

England: “The Big Tin God” by Phillip E. High

Italyby Luigi Cozzi 
Italy: “Rainy Day Revolution No. 39” by Luigi Cozzi

Italy: “Witchcraft for Beginners” by F. C. Gozzini

Netherlands: “They Still Jump” by J. L. [Jacques-Louis] Mahé, translated from Esperanto by Clarkson Crane.

England: “Ecoysiac” by Robert Presslie.

The Soviet Union” by Julius Kagarlitsky, translated by Anne McCaffrey & Irina Poutiatine

U.S.S.R: “Wanderers and Travellers” by Arkady Strugatsky. (Boris Strugatsky, his co-author was omitted)

U.S.S.R.: “Perpetual Motion” by Ilya Varshavsky, translated by S. Ostrofsky.

U.S.S.R.: “Homunculus” by Ilya Varshavsky, translated by S. Ostrofsky.

 Australia: “The Disposal Man” by Damien Broderick.

Cover art and interior illustrations by Jack Gaughan.

International Science Fiction, Vol. 1, No. 1, November 1967. New York: Galaxy Publishing Corporation. 130 pp., Price: $0.50.

 

International Science Fiction, No. 2, June 1968

Editor : Frederik Pohl, Associate Editor : Judy-Lynn Benjamin, Art Director : Jack Gaugan, Publisher : Robert M. Guinn

Contents

Editorial: “The Balance of Ideas” by Lester del Rey

Vietnam War: pro & con petitions

Austria: “Flowers in His Eyes” by Claus Felber

Netherlands: “Der Heisse Kosmonaut” by Gust Gils (the story’s original title is mentioned in german not in dutch !)

France: “Notes from a Cyclical Housewife’s Diary” by Juliette Raabe, translated by Damon Knight

France: “Ysolde” by Nathalie Henneberg, translated by Damon Knight

Italy: “Darkness” by Alessandro Mussi

Poland: “Heroic Symphony” by  Genrikh Altov, translated by George T. Zobrowski (an error had ocurred, Genrikh Altov was a russian author, not a polish one !)

Feature: “Coming Age of Soviet Science Fiction”: A discussion of Ivan Yefremov’s Andromeda (article) by John R. Isaac

U.S.S.R.: “The Last Door” by Yeremey Parnov & Mikhail Yemtsev, translated by Mirra Ginsburg

U.S.S.R.: “The World in Which I Disappeared” by Anatoly Dneprov, translated by Mirra Ginsburg

U.S.S.R.: “The Island of Crabs” by Anatoly Dneprov

U.S.S.R.: “The Founding of Civilization” by Roman Yarov

Chile: “Meccano” by Hugo Correa

India: “Victims of Time” by B. Sridhar Rao, M.D., translated by the author

Esperanto: “In 2112” by J. U. Giesy & J. B. Smith, translated by Forrest J. Ackerman

Cover from “Heroic Symphony” and Interior Illustrations by Jack Gaughan

International Science Fiction, No. 2, June 1968. New York: Galaxy Publishing Corporation. 132 pp., Price: $0.50

Luckily, international SF anthologies and editors as the americans Donald A.Wolfheim, James Gunn, James Morrow and Kathryn Morrow, the europeans Domingo Santos, Franz Rottensteiner, Richard D.Nolane (Olivier Raynaud), Michael Iwoleit (InterNova), Roberto Mendes (International Speculative Fiction), and Lavie Tidhar with the Word SF Blog had continued this remarkable concept.

Pics © Galaxy Publishing Corporation & Jack Gaughan

Previous articleFrederik Pohl (November 26, 1919- September 2, 2013) : A Life Dedicated to Science Fiction
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