Speculative biology is a genre that uses art and science to reimagine life. It often features animals that seem wildly fantastical at first, but then turn out to be surprisingly realistic once you look closer.
It’s popular among amateur scientists and animal enthusiasts, as well as in fandoms featuring fictional creatures. The genre can also be used in scientific literature and documentaries.
Origin of speculative biology genre
Speculative biology is a genre that involves creating fictional creatures and planets in order to speculate on what might have happened in the past or in the future. The idea is to use the laws of science in a new way, as well as creative imagination, to make up a world that makes more sense to the author than what is actually happening in the real world.
The origin of speculative biology can be traced to ancient times when literature was heavily influenced by mythology, legends and fairy tales. Many works of fiction from this time period have elements of speculative biology in them, because they attempt to explain how organisms might have evolved or changed over time.
In the nineteenth century, Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace developed their theory of evolution. This was a major advancement in the field of biology as it allowed scientists to understand how living things change over time.
Today, speculative biology is a genre that encompasses a variety of different types of work. Most of it is based on the theories of evolution and uses scientific principles to make up an entirely new world, or one that has been altered in some way.
Some examples of speculative biology are Paleoart, which is artwork that reconstructs animals from the past, and Xenology, which is a hypothetical field of science that would study alien life. Other types of speculative biology include Alternative Evolution, which explores what might have happened if some critical event in the Earth’s history had gone differently.
Another recurring theme in the speculative biology genre is the timeline bifurcation, where authors imagine what life might have been like if the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction never occurred. These works often explore how dinosaurs would have evolved if they were to have survived the extinction.
The speculative biology genre is also often used in science-fiction stories and is an important aspect of some fandoms that feature fantasy creatures. Unlike most other sci-fi works, the speculative biology genre tends to be more realistic and believable, so it is very popular among amateur biologists and animal fans.
Origin of speculative biology as a literary genre
Speculative biology is a literary genre that uses science to answer “what if” questions about the future of life. It can range from a completely fictional species to an alternate history focused on an alternative evolution of life on Earth. The genre is usually considered hard science fiction because of its strong connection to and basis in science, particularly biology.
Among other things, speculative biology can explore the possible appearance of extraterrestrial creatures. It can also focus on other planets in our Solar System or even the entire Galaxy.
The origin of speculative biology as a literary genre is unclear, although it is believed to be rooted in the 19th century. This is when writers like H. G. Wells started to include imaginary future creatures in their stories. The concept of speculative biology in the 20th century became more popular and grew to encompass several different subgenres, some of which are still widely popular today.
Some of these subgenres are more famous than others, but all share a common theme of asking “what could have been?” and imagining what the world might be like if a particular scenario had played out differently. Some of these scenarios involve the fate of humanity, while others involve exploring alternative ecosystems or the development of alien races.
One of the most popular subgenres is the “Timeline Bifurcation” subgenre, which explores the idea that dinosaurs may have evolved and existed on the same timeline as humans. Typically, this involves an alternate history that is set after the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event.
Another popular subgenre is the “Future Evolution” subgenre, which examines the future development of humans and other creatures on an alternate planet. These works often have an evilutionary biologist that tries to use humanity’s progress to create new species, or they focus on invasive species that take over any ecosystem they happen to be in.
These stories are generally not very well paced, but they are usually interesting and thought-provoking. They often have a variety of protagonists that all work together to solve a common problem, and they usually have a villain who is the cause of the problem.
Origin of speculative biology as a scientific genre
The term speculative biology is often used to describe science fiction that deals with the evolution of life on other worlds or in alternate timelines. The genre incorporates the same themes that are common in other sci-fi works, such as technology, but is focused more on biology and its hypothetical scenarios than many other types of speculative fiction.
The origin of speculative biology as a scientific genre dates back to the 1980s when the book “After Man” was published by Scottish geologist Dougal Dixon. This book paved the way for a number of similar books that followed.
These works would eventually become popular and would be discussed professionally by scientists. In addition to this, several documentaries have been made on the subject of speculative biology, and a number of websites dedicated to animal fans, especially online art forums such as DeviantArt and Reddit, also feature a large amount of speculative-biological artwork.
Speculative biology is one of the most popular and widely studied genres online. It has a strong connection to and basis in science, particularly biology, but also includes a lot of fantasy and supernatural elements that make it appealing to both professional and amateur biologists alike.
While most speculative biology fiction obeys real-world laws of science, some do break those rules. This is especially common in fandoms where creatures are reimagined with more realistic traits and behaviors, as well as in comics and other art.
Another speculative biology subgenre is xenobiology, which deals with the construction and exploration of alien biospheres. This can include creating a biosphere on a tidally-locked planet, or in the atmosphere of a gas giant.
In a more esoteric sense, the concept of parallel botany can be considered as a form of speculative biology. It is a branch of biology that studies the relationship between animals and plants that are different in some way from those on Earth, such as birds or cephalopods.
In some cases, such a branch of speculative biology is also known as cryptopaleontology, which deals with the study of hypothetical intelligent dinosaurs that existed in the Jurassic Period and are not represented in the fossil record. In other instances, it can be described as a subgenre of science fiction.
Origin of speculative biology as a popular genre
Originating from a foundation of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace’s theory of evolution, speculative biology is a literary genre that explores hypothetical scenarios for life on earth and other planets. Often, these stories explore how different species could have evolved, and how those changes could have affected their ecosystems.
Many of these works are written in an alternate history setting. For example, humans may have become extinct during a mass extinction event, or they might have migrated off-world to evolve into different species.
Another popular genre of speculative biology is that which deals with alien life. Generally, these stories examine the possibility that life forms from other worlds could have appeared on Earth and the impact they would have had on our culture and environment.
The first book that took on this concept was After Man, by Dougal Dixon. The book is widely credited with the origin of speculative biology as a genre, as well as inspiring many others to take interest in it.
In this book, Dixon speculates about the possible evolution of animals on a post-apocalyptic earth. His most famous creations include the brachiating feline and the four-armed Green Martian.
Other popular speculative biology books include ones that deal with the future of humanity, and how it might evolve into different species. For example, a novel called All Tomorrows: The Billion Year Chronicle of the Myriad Species and Mixed Fortunes of Man by C.M. Kosemon, a satirical work that explores how humanity could evolve into different creatures, has enjoyed popularity online for years.
Usually, these stories are set on planets with low gravity, so the fauna can grow larger than on earth. They also often focus on the flora of a new world, as it can help authors create realistic alien fauna.
These books also tend to feature villains who are either evilutionary biologists or invasive species that threaten the ecosystems of their world. Some of these stories also deal with human conflict, such as the emergence of a new super-race or the eventual end of humanity.
Another wildly popular form of speculative biology is that which takes place on a distant planet. This genre is especially common in science fiction, as it gives us a look into what life could be like on planets that are far from our own. This type of speculative biology is often considered to be hard science fiction as it takes a more scientific approach to the subject than other types of speculative biology.