Martians Come In Clouds - Philip K. Dick - Fantastic Universe Magazine June-July 1953

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Cover: Fantastic Universe, June-July 1953 by Alex Schomburg

Blurb: This is Volume 1, Number 1. 

Historical Note:He began publishing science fiction stories in 1952, at age 23. He found little commercial success until his alternative history novel The Man in the High Castle (1962) earned him acclaim, including a Hugo Award for Best Novel, when he was 33. This makes this particular publication a must have due to how early it is to his career and how pressing the topics he explores so early in the 1950s!

One Reviewer Provided this expert analysis:
“Martians Come in Clouds” tells the story of an alien species arriving on Earth (specifically a suburban section of America) as refugees from some massive ecological catastrophe on their home planet. Desiring to share the resources of the planet, living innocuously on the oceans, whenever they arrive they are confronted by mobs of indifferent and xenophobic people. They use violence to kill the few that arrive locally. The violence implemented against the aliens is a source of pride. From a young age, children are taught to have no sympathy or remorse for the visitors. While I do not want to make a precise parallel to the American urban crisis, Dick was writing this story at a time when white suburban communities were engaged in resistance against integration efforts. This was not only a phenomenon of the Jim Crow south, but was nationwide. Through red-lining, white-controlled home-owners associations, and discriminatory lending and rental practices, suburbanites worked hard to keep blacks and other minorities out. We can imagine their victories were celebrated with no less disgusting displays than we see at the end of the story. The imagery of the mob actions (poles, fire, trees, shouting crowds, police indifference or support for vigilante action) certainly suggest the racial violence of the first half of the twentieth century and the civil rights era.“ -

Fiction and Essays:

  • fep • The Broad Horizon • essay by The Editor
  • 2 • Nightmare Tower • [Lynn Fenlay] • novella by Sam Merwin, Jr. [as by Jacques Jean Ferrat]
  • 50 • Viscous Circle • novelette by A. Bertram Chandler
  • 67 • Little Men of Space • short story by Frank Belknap Long
  • 81 • The Fire and the Flesh • (1943) • novelette by E. Hoffmann Price
  • 107 • The Maugham Obsession • [Tex Harrigan] • short story by August Derleth
  • 116 • The Other Tiger • short story by Arthur C. Clarke
  • 119 • The Small Bears • short story by Gene L. Henderson
  • 129 • Martians Come in Clouds • short story by Philip K. Dick
  • 138 • The Minister Had To Wait • short story by Roger Dee
  • 149 • Finders Keepers • short story by Milton Lesser
  • 159 • War in Heaven • essay by Fletcher Pratt
  • 167 • Time in Thy Flight • short story by Ray Bradbury
  • 171 • It's in the Blood • short story by Eric Frank Russell
  • 176 • Of Those Who Came • (1952) • short story by Francis G. Rayer[as by George Longdon]
  • 189 • Universe in Books (Fantastic Universe, June-July 1953) • [Universe in Books (Fantastic Universe)] • essay by The Editor
  • bep • The Past, the Present, and the Future • essay by The Publisher