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William Atheling Jr Award (1976-)
Subcategory of Ditmar Awards
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First awarded in 1976.

Not all the works for which this award is given are about Australian science fiction. If, however, it has been awarded to an Australian writer, that award is included here with a note about the work for which it was given.

The award was not given in 2002.


  • Awarded for excellence in science fiction criticism.

    The award is named after the pseudonym used by the American science fiction writer James Blish for his science fiction critiques.

Latest Winners / Recipients

Year: 2020

winner Grant Watson for reviews on FictionMachine.

Year: 2019

winner y separately published work icon Capitalocene Dreams : Dark Tales of Near Futures & The 21st Century Catastrophe : Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction Cat Sparks , Perth : 2018 16429751 2018 single work thesis

'This thesis investigates the research question: What is the role of speculative fiction in a climate changed world? The short story collection: Capitalocene Dreams: Dark Tales of Near Futures explores life on the fringes of disintegrating Australian enclaves during the dying days of neoliberal excess. The exegesis: The 21st Century Catastrophe: Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction, contrasts ecocatastrophe science fiction of the sixties and seventies with contemporary climate or Anthropocene fiction.'

Source: Curtin University.

for 'The 21st Century Catastrophe: Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction' (exegesis component).

Year: 2017

winner y separately published work icon The Rebirth of Rapunzel : A Mythic Biography of the Maiden in the Tower Kate Forsyth , Mawson : FableCroft Publishing , 2016 9476898 2016 selected work criticism essay

'A unique collection presenting Kate Forsyth’s extensive academic research into the ‘Rapunzel’ fairy tale, alongside several other pieces related to fairy tales and folklore.

'This book is not your usual reference work, but a complex and engaging exploration of the subject matter, written with Forsyth’s distinctive flair.' (Publication summary)

Year: 2016

winner y separately published work icon Letters to Tiptree Alisa Krasnostein (editor), Alexandra Pierce (editor), Yokine : Twelfth Planet Press , 2015 8815653 2015 anthology correspondence

'In celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Alice Sheldon’s birth, and in recognition of the enormous influence of both Tiptree and Sheldon on the field, Twelfth Planet Press is publishing a selection of thoughtful letters written by science fiction and fantasy’s writers, editors, critics and fans to celebrate her, to recognise her work, and maybe in some cases to finish conversations set aside nearly thirty years ago.' (Publication summary)

Year: 2015

winner Tansy Rayner Roberts For 'Does Sex Make Science Fiction Soft?' in Uncanny Magazine, no. 1.