Visions of Liberty
Martin H. Greenberg
Martin H. Greenberg

I’m rather late with this sad news, but I just read the obituary in the August digital issue of Locus Magazine a couple of days ago. Martin H. Greenberg died on June 25, 2011 after a long struggle with cancer. A political scientist like myself, Greenberg had a long, prolific, and influential career in genre fiction as an anthologist. He edited and co-edited more short fiction anthologies than I can probably read in a lifetime.

Freedom!

Greenberg’s death is particularly worth noting for libertarians because of two of his anthologies, co-edited with Mark Tier, that won the Prometheus Special Award in 2oo5: Give Me Liberty and Visions of Liberty, which have been collected into an omnibus anthology titled Freedom! The anthologies are stacked with top talent, including short stories by Vernor Vinge, Murray Leinster, A.E. van Vogt, Frank Herbert, Eric Frank Russell, Robert J. Sawyer, Mike Resnick and Tobias S. Buckell, Brad Linaweaver, Michael A. Stackpole, Jack Williamson, and more.

The back cover description of Freedom! reads in part:

As Thomas Jefferson put it, “That government is best which governs least.” And, as Will Rogers wryly quipped, “We’re lucky we don’t get the government we pay for!” In the future, eternal vigilance against our own government will be even more important than vigilance against hostile outsiders.

This stellar roster of writers consider how a truly free society could operate, how the Soviet Union might have fallen apart even earlier because of an apparently harmless device, how a low-tech society might throw off the influence of more “advanced” intruders, how the right to own weapons is fundamental to freedom, and more.

In the future, freedom may be even more threatened than in our present — and this volume suggests original and unusual ways of defending it.

I’m very much interested in publishing a review of Freedom!, or reviews of Give Me Liberty and Visions of Liberty, although I will review Freedom! myself eventually if I don’t receive any submissions.

I’ve reproduced the print/digital issue obituary from Locus Magazine below. There is a shorter version, published earlier, on the website. You can also learn more about Greenberg and his impressively long bibliography from his SF Encyclopedia entry.

Editor and author Martin H[arry] Greenberg, 70, died June 25, 2011 in Green Bay, WI after a long struggle with cancer. Greenberg was an influential and prolific editor and packager of anthologies, most SF, fantasy, and horror. Because he sometimes worked as an anonymous packager through his company Tekno Books, it’s difficult to determine exactly how many titles he had a hand in, but he certainly worked on more than 1,000 anthologies, published from the 1970s to 2011 (with more forthcoming).

The first anthology he edited, Political Science Fiction (1974, with Patricia Warrick) was meant as a teaching guide, and he co-edited several other educational volumes of SF in the Through Science Fiction series. He soon rose to prominence with more commercial anthologies, though, initially co-editing with Joseph D. Olander, Charles G. Waugh, and occasionally his wife Rosalind M. Greenberg.

Give Me Liberty

Though he edited many volumes on his own, Greenberg was also the field’s most prolific creator of “team-up” anthologies, co-editing with an astonishing array of SF luminaries and newcomers, notably Poul Anderson, Gregory Benford, Orson Scott Card, Arthur C. Clarke, Damon Knight, Barry N. Malzberg, Walter M. Miller, Andre Norton, Frederik Pohl, Fred Saberhagen, Robert Silverberg, Connie Willis, Jane Yolen, and many others. His most frequent collaborator was Isaac Asimov: together the two edited more than 125 anthologies.

Greenberg was born March 1, 1941 in Miami Beach, FL. He attended the University of Miami, and got his doctorate in political science from the University of Connecticut in 1969. He was dean of the school of international studies at Florida International University, and taught at the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay from 1975 until his retirement as professor emeritus in 1996. He began editing under the name Martin H. Greenberg to distinguish himself from the field’s other Martin Greenberg, publisher of Gnome Press.

Visions of Liberty

He wrote nonfiction in his scholarly field, including Bureaucracy and Development: A Mexican Case Study (1970), and some nonfiction about SF, notably Index to Stories in the Thematic Anthologies of Science Fiction (1978, with Joseph D. Olander and Marshall B. Tymn) and Science Fiction and Fantasy Series and Sequels: A Bibliography — Volume 1: Books (1986) with Tim Cottrill & Charles G. Waugh. He also co-edited (with Olander) many anthologies featuring critical essays on writers, including Isaac Asimov (1977), Arthur C. Clarke (1977), Robert A. Heinlein (1978), Ursula K. Le Guin (1979), Ray Bradbury (1980), and Philip K. Dick (1983), and edited numerous other anthologies of nonfiction on various SFnal subjects.

Greenberg won a Milford Award for lifetime achievement in SF publishing and editing in 1989. Horrors! 365 Scary Stories (1998, with Stefan R. Dziemianowicz & Robert Weinberg) won a Stoker for outstanding anthology, and Give Me Liberty (2003, with Mark Tier) and Visions of Liberty (2004, with Mark Tier) received special Prometheus Awards in 2005. Greenberg received a Life Achievement Award from the Horror Writers Association in 2004, and a Solstice Award from SFWA in 2009.

Greenberg was predeceased by first wife, Sally. He is survived by wife Rosalind, a daughter, two stepdaughters, and a step-granddaughter. Rosalind will continue to run Tekno Books.

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About the Author

Geoffrey Allan Plauché Executive Editor

Geoffrey is an Aristotelian-Liberal political philosopher, an adjunct instructor for Buena Vista University, the founder and executive editor of Prometheus Unbound, and the webmaster of The Libertarian Standard. His work has appeared in Libertarian Papers, the Journal of Libertarian Studies, the Journal of Value Inquiry, and Transformers and Philosophy. He lives in Edgewood, KY with his wife and two children.

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