In his foreword to The Physics of Star Trek, Stephen Hawking reflects on the value of science fiction for science:

Science fiction like Star Trek is not only good fun but it also serves a serious purpose, that of expanding the human imagination. . . . There is a two-way trade between science fiction and science. Science fiction suggests ideas that scientists incorporate into their theories, but sometimes science turns up notions that are stranger than any science fiction.

. . . Nevertheless, today’s science fiction is often tomorrow’s science fact. The physics that underlies Star Trek is surely worth investigating. To confine our attention to terrestrial matters would be to limit the human spirit (Krauss 2007: xi–xiii).1


This seemingly obvious comment on science fiction, however, loses its validity in South Korea, where even the global...

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