Questions tagged [robert-a-heinlein]

For questions about Robert A. Heinlein who was an American science fiction writer. Often called "the dean of science fiction writers", he was one of the most popular, influential, and controversial authors of the genre. Only use for questions about the author, for questions about his works use the specific work tag instead.

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3
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3answers
152 views

When Peewee shows up, why is she wearing a space suit?

In ch. 4 of Heinlein's Have Space Suit, Will Travel, two flying saucers land in the field behind the protagonist Kip's house. Two figures come out of one. We later learn that these are the Mother ...
9
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1answer
214 views

Story similar to a Canticle for Leibowitz, maybe by Heinlein

For many decades I have remembered reading a science fiction story that I had thought was A Canticle for Leibowitz. Having just watched an Extra Credits video about that novel, I realized I have been ...
11
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2answers
325 views

Robert Heinlein character quote about Hell and kittens

I keep vaguely remembering a character in one of Robert Heinlein's books saying something along the lines "there was a special place in hell for child molesters and people who drown kittens." I just ...
8
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1answer
140 views

Was “Orphans of the Sky” intended to parallel the Bible?

Heinlein's Orphans of the Sky contains some things that, to me at least, appear to be direct religious commentary / allegory / parody. For instance, the name of "Jordan" being God, and the mention ...
11
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0answers
261 views

Story with quote about oral sex and eyelashes, possibly Heinlein

Maybe fifteen years ago I read a story in which a character says, of the act of performing oral sex on a woman, that if your eyelashes don’t get wet, you’re doing it wrong—or words to that effect. In ...
12
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2answers
1k views

Heinlein works where slide rule is used to calculate navigation in space

A question on Space.SE; Is it possible to navigate space travel with no computer? got me looking for a list of works where Heinlein solely relied on a slide rule to calculate navigation in space. I ...
37
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1answer
2k views

Meaning of P.R.S. Aes Triplex in Heinlein's Space Cadet

I picked up an old library copy of the illustrated Scribner's edition of Robert Heinlein's Space Cadet and am having fun reading it and pondering the seemingly artless and unresolved juxtaposition of ...
8
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0answers
126 views

Heinlein's Have Space Suit — Will Travel, illustrated edition?

I'm 52, and like a lot of American guys my age, I first fell in love with SF by reading the Heinlein juveniles, which my grade-school library had on the shelf. Recently, for nostagia, I've been ...
12
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1answer
2k views

Why do readers of Starship Troopers think Juan/Johnny is Filipino?

I have commonly heard that people think the lead is Filipino. I read Starship Troopers and recall the main character living in Buenos Aires before shipping out for military service. I recall later ...
6
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1answer
175 views

What are the oddities of Mannies speech pattern?

While reading Heinlein's The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, I noticed something is off in Mannie's speech pattern. But I can't really put my finger on all these oddities as I am not a native English ...
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0answers
513 views

Evolution of Heinlein's treatment of homosexuality?

IIRC the treatment of homosexuality in Heinlein's writing changed a lot over time. My recollection is that in an early book (possibly Stranger in a Strange Land?), a sympathetic or authorial ...
6
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1answer
322 views

Did Robert Heinlein write about his real-life cats?

Robert Heinlein must have known and loved many cats. Pete, in The Door into Summer is a fully realized character, and Pixel in two of the Lazarus Long books is also memorable. The title of The Door ...
14
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3answers
1k views

Did Heinlein intend to portray men and women as equals?

Heinlein's writing career spanned 49 years. Some of his work was written before the Women's Liberation movements of the 60's and 70's, some of his work was written after. His casts of characters ...
12
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1answer
199 views

Why Kansas City in The Puppet Masters?

In Heinlein's "The Puppet Masters" the protagonist realises that the Masters don't need to be directly attached to the base of the spine. That makes it easier but they can control you from any contact....
12
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1answer
388 views

Info about the incident that inspired Heinlein's “Starman Jones”?

According to Heinlein, "Starman Jones" was inspired by a real life incident: This book was written without an outline from a situation in the early 19th century. Two American teenagers took off ...
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0answers
145 views

Was Stranger in a Strange Land the first sci fi novel to deal with the mind body concept of visualized intention and its effect on the physical body?

The protagonist in Stranger in a Strange Land JMS comes from Mars, taught by spirits that sail across the landscape (sages? Monks? Gurus?). Shortly after arriving he starts to grok what's going on ...
12
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5answers
1k views

Is this quote from Robert Heinlein's writing? “I never learned from a man who agreed with me”

Can anyone provide a source for this quote, supposedly from Robert Heinlein or from one of his works? "I never learned from a man who agreed with me." Or similar wording. I don't recognize it, and I'...
10
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1answer
343 views

Starship Troopers Choose Your Own Adventure with RPG aspects

I read this in the late eighties. It was official Starship Troopers branded, based entirely on the book, not the movie. Unlike a traditional Choose Your Own Adventure, in this you had units, ...
11
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1answer
381 views

What is a rolligon and why do people travel using it?

“Rolligon” is mentioned a few times in the novel. One mention is in chapter 9, about the site of the big secret construction project. Nevertheless many people were there, during and after ...
7
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2answers
88 views

How many people live in Luna?

At the time of the events told in Robert Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (not counting the epilogue), approximately how many people live in Luna? I seem to remember that the number was ...
13
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1answer
197 views

Who gets the fine Stuart pays for not learning the local customs?

In Robert A. Heinlein, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress chapter 11, we hear the story of Manuel serving as a judge. Manuel fines Stuart Rene LaJoie 50 Hong Kong dollars for making advances on the girl ...
11
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1answer
142 views

How did main character of “The Door Into Summer” take his own place in cryo chamber?

Long story short, in The Door Into Summer, the main character freezes himself and wakes up in the future. Then he goes back to the past using an experimental time travel, does his clever business, and ...
4
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0answers
216 views

Why is Bob Wilson afraid when he sees a High One in “By His Bootstraps”? [closed]

In Robert Heinlein's 1941 short story, By His Bootstraps, the main character Bob Wilson, is afraid after searching the past and finally seeing a High One. What about this sighting invokes a feeling of ...
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2answers
301 views

In The Rolling Stones, did Heinlein deliberately try to confuse the reader with nicknames?

Robert Heinlein's novel The Rolling Stones has two or three unrelated names for six out of the seven main characters. The narrator and different characters use different names for calling each other. ...
5
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0answers
143 views

In The Rolling Stones, who put the note on the bicycles in the name of the Galactic Overlord?

In Robert Heinlein's novel The Rolling Stones, when Mr. Stone retrieves the bicycles he'd jettisoned from the spaceship, he finds a note on them signed by the Galactic Overlord, a fictional character ...
11
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2answers
413 views

What was the Free Trader society's debt to Baslim in Heinlein's Citizen of the Galaxy?

Did Colonel Richard Baslim rescue a Free Trader starship's crew from slavery or were the free traders trying their hand at slave trade and Baslim stopped them? If the former, why were the traders so ...
13
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1answer
296 views

First Story which Featured a Generational Ship where the Crew Have Forgotten

Is Heinlein's 1941 story Orphan's of the Sky the first instance of a generation ship where the current inhabitants have almost completely forgotten how to run the ship, and are mostly unaware of ...
14
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3answers
2k views

(Robert Heinlein?) story about a corporation made rich by investing in unlikely research projects [duplicate]

In this story, a corporation or group becomes extremely rich by investing in long-shot research projects that, against all odds, keep succeeding. Almost like a science fiction version of Brewster's ...
11
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3answers
2k views

Longer version of Robert Heinlein's 1951 “The Puppet Masters”

It appears that both the Galaxy Science Fiction serialization and the original novel version of Heinlein's The Puppet Masters were edited down from 96,000 words to about 60,000. According to Wikipedia,...
5
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2answers
350 views

What are they mining for in The Moon is a Harsh Mistress?

I read Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress some time ago and recall the mining operation but cannot for the life of me remember what they were digging up. Can anyone help me?
12
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2answers
748 views

Inspiration or antecedent for title of Heinlein's “The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress”?

I'm fairly certain that I know the answer to this question, but I want to appeal to the collective wisdom here before I definitively file this in my mind as solved. Is there an earlier source or a ...
6
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2answers
649 views

Does “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress” depict a socialist revolution?

I recently saw a meme with a girl's face saying "Slams socialism because there's no such thing as a free lunch... Doesn't realize the line comes from a novel about socialist revolution." This is a ...
2
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1answer
949 views

Is there a movie that is based on or very similar to Robert Heinlein's “Tunnel in the Sky”? [closed]

One book that I've always wished there was a good movie for, was Robert Heinlein's Tunnel in the Sky. I was just wondering if there was ever a movie adaptation that they maybe changed the name and I ...
5
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3answers
761 views

Structure of Heinlein's ship Vanguard (Orphans of the Sky)

I have a question regarding the structure of the spaceship Vanguard featured in Heinlein's 1941 novel Orphans of the Sky (Wikipedia' synopsys here). The ship is described as a huge cylinder with many ...
8
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2answers
387 views

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress: Was Prof Controlling Mike?

Some other questions touched on the subject of Mike's absence near the end of the book. My question relates to the sudden absence in relation to Prof's death. Here's why I think this: Prof dies, ...
8
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1answer
821 views

What were the thirty-one crash landings in Starship Troopers?

In Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers reference was made a few times to "the thirty-one crash landings", the thirty-one offenses that warranted the death penalty for the soldier who committed them. ...
12
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2answers
424 views

Do Heinlein's novels mention a plausible zero-gravity cat litter box?

I have read a lot of science fiction works with cats being the optimal space pet. I know Heinlein was a cat person, and I am thinking he had a solution for cats doing their business in space, but I ...
11
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1answer
462 views

Did the tethered stations in “Friday” have artificial gravity?

Having read the book Friday by Robert Heinlein many years ago, I became aware of the concept of the space elevator/ space tethers. While fascinating in concept, our current technology negates the ...
6
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1answer
221 views

Space Travel in “Waldo”

Before the "Other World" business starts up Waldo is a hard sf story. I enjoyed reading the description of Waldo's free-fall habitat; given the lack of the computerization, I think it still holds up. ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Why do many of Heinlein's characters despise gratitude?

In the novel "Stranger in a strange land" by Robert Heinlein there is this passage: ’Gratitude’ is a euphemism for resentment…The Japanese have five different ways to say ‘thank you’—and every ...
4
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1answer
594 views

Did Robert Heinlein Create the Modern Concept of Powered Armor?

Is Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers, published in 1959 and winner of the Hugo award for Best Novel in 1960, responsible for the modern concept of "powered armor" that is such a standard of recent ...
11
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1answer
756 views

Why is Dr. Mahmoud nicknamed “Stinky?”

In Stranger in a Strange Land by Heinlein, why is Dr Mahmoud nicknamed "Stinky?" There aren't any mentions in there of his shower habit or lack thereof that I found; plus he seems like a rather high ...
13
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1answer
954 views

Who are 'The Four' in Space Cadet and why are they honoured?

In Heinlein's Space Cadet, there are four names added to every roll call, with others answering for them. Those names are Dahlquist, Martin, Rivera, and Wheeler. Dahlquist Dahlquist is the ...
19
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3answers
1k views

SF Story - Word emotional value

I know, this is too easy and the question might be too conversational. Still, it fascinates me, particularly since the concept was very insightful and prescient. I think it was Heinlein, in one of ...
3
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1answer
471 views

Heinlein's Influence on Avatar

There is a surprising similarity between the James Cameron's movie "Avatar" and Time for the Stars by Robert Heinlein. Both stories involve twin brothers, one of whom is crippled. Was Heinlein's ...
17
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1answer
1k views

Did Heinlein express an opinion on “non-traditional marriage” in real life?

Heinlein is known for sprinkling his books with less-traditional sexual dynamics shown positively (e.g. polyandry in "The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress", general sexual freedom in "Stranger in a Strange ...
21
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2answers
2k views

How anticommunist was Robert Heinlein?

Robert Heinlein is often remembered as being far to the right of his fellow members of the Big Three, Asimov and Clarke. How accurate is it to portray Heinlein as an anticommunist?
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1k views

How do the roads in “The Roads Must Roll” work?

Robert Heinlein's "The Roads Must Roll" describes a future where roads are moving strips, with buildings and even towns permanently on the roads. I never understood quite how this worked. Aren't the ...
20
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3answers
2k views

What is the Significance of Mike “losing a finger”?

In Heinlein's Stranger in a Strange Land, Jubal thinks he sees Mike cut off one of his fingers while cutting up an apple. He handed the glass to Anne, then took the fruit knife and sliced off a ...