Uchronia

I just learnt a new word. Uchronia is a branch of fiction dealing with alternate history, the typical ‘what if’ scenarios. One of the earliest examples of this genre happens to be ‘Tirant Lo Blanch’, a compulsory reading for all Catalan students: Tirant saves Constantinople from being lost to the Turks. 

The very earliest example contemplates an alternative history in which Alexander the great expanded westward instead of eastward. Famous alternate histories are Philip K Dick’s ‘The Man in the High Castle’, in which Germany and Japan win WWII, and the recent ‘The Years of Rice and Salt’, in which the Bubonic Plague kills 99% of Europe’s population (it killed around a third in reality).

I find this an absolutely thrilling matter of discussion.

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