Take the 2-minute tour ×
Science Fiction & Fantasy Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for science fiction and fantasy enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Looking for the title/author of a science fiction short story.

The protagonist was a dissident in captivity. The government had the ability to kill him and bring him back to life multiple times. They tortured him to death multiple times (boiling in oil, crushing, etc.) and made him clean up his own corpse afterwards.

In the beginning, he wanted to convince them that he was no longer a dissident to get them to stop, at the end, he no longer feared death, and gave a speech convincing some listeners that the government was wrong. He was shipped off to a colony world at the end, since they didn't believe in capital punishment.

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 9 down vote accepted

That's 'A Thousand Deaths' by Orson Scott Card; your recollection of the details is quite accurate.

It ties in with a number of his other stories, but can be read stand-alone.

It may be found other places, but I first read it in: Flux: Tales of Human Futures

share|improve this answer
There was an episode of Stargate: SG-1 based on that short-story, where Ba'al repeatedly tortured Colonel O'Neill to death, only to resurrect him with the sarcophagus and continue the torture. –  James Sheridan Jun 10 '14 at 2:13

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.