“The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible.” – Arthur C. Clarke
Born on this date in 1917, British writer Clarke is perhaps most famous for being co-writer of the screenplay for 2001: A Space Odyssey, widely considered to be one of the most influential films of all time. A farmer’s son who “loved looking at the night skies,” he was mostly self-taught about astronomy but later earned major degrees in physics and astro-physics before turning to writing.
An avid popularizer of space travel and a futurist of uncanny ability, he wrote nearly 30 books – both fiction and nonfiction – and more than a dozen collections of short stories. He also wrote hundreds of essays, which appeared in various popular magazines. In 1961 he was awarded the Kalinga Prize by UNESCO for his efforts in popularizing science. His science fiction writings earned him a number of Hugo and Nebula awards, which along with a large readership made him one of the towering figures of science fiction.
by Queen Elizabeth for “Services to Literature.” Today science fiction writing awards in Britain and more than a dozen other nations are presented in his honor and recognizing his never-ending quest to learn more and share more about space and space travel.
“I don't pretend we have all the answers,” he said. “But the questions are certainly worth thinking about.”
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