science fiction


Definition of science fiction 

: fiction dealing principally with the impact of actual or imagined science on society or individuals or having a scientific factor as an essential orienting component

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Other Words from science fiction

science-fictional \ ˈsī-​ən(t)s-​ˈfik-​shnəl , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of science fiction in a Sentence

Time travel exists only in the realm of science fiction.

Recent Examples on the Web

Eschewing the fantasy trappings of its predecessors going back almost 20 years, Planetfall is a science fiction 4X game—a bit like Civilization: Beyond Earth if Beyond Earth had aliens. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "PdxCon 2018: Paradox reveals Imperator Rome, Age of Wonders: Planetfall, and board games," 19 May 2018 The summit was a spectacle -- with Kim even comparing it to a science fiction movie. Major Garrett, CBS News, "Trump leaves Singapore claiming success after historic meeting with Kim Jong Un," 12 June 2018 With a catalog that extends beyond traditional superhero fare to include science fiction, horror and fantasy books, Vertigo was the imprint for both creators and readers unafraid to experiment. Tracy Brown,, "DC's Vertigo to relaunch with new name, logo and seven comic-book series," 7 June 2018 The virus—which is thought to be the inspiration for the 2011 science fiction movie Contagion—is rare but often deadly. Korin Miller, SELF, "What to Know About the Rare and Deadly Nipah Virus," 29 May 2018 The Nevers is described as an epic science fiction drama about a gang of Victorian women who find themselves with unusual abilities, relentless enemies and a mission that might change the world. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "Joss Whedon Sci-Fi Drama Ordered Straight to Series at HBO," 13 July 2018 The film, a science fiction allegory (though the sci-fi angle arrives late in the game), comes from rapper and musician Boots Riley of Oakland, California, hip-hop band the Coup, who makes his feature debut here as screenwriter and director. Michael Phillips, Detroit Free Press, "Review: Sci-fi and satire meet in ‘Sorry to Bother You’," 12 July 2018 The 1968 science fiction classic will be playing at 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 11 a.m. Sunday, according to a post on the Tower Theatre's Facebook page. Kayla Fitzgerald, sacbee, "Additional showtimes of '2001: A Space Odyssey' slated for Tower Theatre," 10 July 2018 That’s a common tack for science fiction — particularly satires and dystopia stories, which poke fun at America’s less-desirable elements, and challenge people to do better. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, "10 subversive, dark American futures to stream on July 4th," 4 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'science fiction.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of science fiction

1851, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for science fiction

Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for science fiction

The first known use of science fiction was in 1851

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More Definitions for science fiction

science fiction


English Language Learners Definition of science fiction

: stories about how people and societies are affected by imaginary scientific developments in the future

science fiction


Kids Definition of science fiction

: made-up stories about the influence of real or imagined science on society or individuals

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to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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