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Author Topic: The 21st Century, as Imagined in the 19th Century  (Read 1316 times)
Peter Brassbeard
Zeppelin Captain
United States United States

« on: February 04, 2016, 08:29:59 pm »

Here’s a lark.

Ever wonder what technological marvels will be making people’s lives easier in 100 years time? Of course you have, you’re a living human being with a brain. With so much science fiction being slapped in our faces these past several decades it’s pretty much impossible not to ask that question.

But at the turn of the 20th Century, science fiction was a novel new concept (in fact the term hadn’t even been coined yet). This was the time of the two great forefathers of the sci-fi genre, Jules Verne and H.G Wells. Verne in particular had introduced many futuristic technological marvels in his works, and the French public were hooked. This was also the height of the industrial revolution, and so as the new century dawned people got to wondering, considering how far machines had advanced in the previous century, what might industrialized society look like 100 years hence.
Zeppelin Captain

« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2016, 09:58:33 pm »

These postcards have been linked to before on this forum,  but they are worth a look and are a good resource when you want to see how this stuff was visualized by an actual 19th century artist. The whole set of postcards was published in book form in the 1980s with commentary by Isaac Asimov.
Hurricane Annie
Zeppelin Captain
New Zealand New Zealand

« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2016, 06:03:20 am »

Maybe not in the form in these cards - but  in concept many of these machines and gadgets have been developed.
Cora Courcelle
Snr. Officer
England England

« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2016, 10:21:41 pm »

The radium fireplace looks particularly appealing, but I can't believe they missed predicting radium toothpaste.

You have to tread a fine line between avant-garde surrealism and getting yourself sectioned...
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