Jerry Was a Man

"Jerry Was a Man" (1947) is a short story by American writer Robert A. Heinlein. It is about an attempt by a genetically modified chimpanzee to achieve human rights. The main theme of the story is civil liberties, in this case extended towards a group of genetically enhanced chimpanzees to allow them equal rights under the law.

The story was originally published in Thrilling Wonder Stories, October 1947, and is collected in the book Assignment in Eternity.

TV version

"Jerry Was a Man" was adapted for television and aired as part of the anthology series Masters of Science Fiction, on U.S. network ABC during the summer of 2007.

The TV version has manufactured "anthropoid workers", produced through a combination of biological growth and engineering, ready made with some innate abilities and training to perform their allotted tasks. When the nicknamed "Joes" wore out or their jobs were completed, they were recycled into products such as dogfood.[1]

Heinlein's original work depicted Jerry as an aging domestic worker, whereas the television version depicted Jerry as an explosive ordnance disposal technician or "minesweeper". In it, Jerry demonstrates his humanity to the court by singing the song "Old Folks at Home (Swanee River)", an old slave ballad, in front of the jury. In the TV version, Jerry's level of self-awareness is minimal, but his lawyer demonstrates his humanity through three traits: first, his fondness for singing "Jingle Bells"; second, his ability to tell a lie in order to obtain a cigarette; third (and most significant) his sense of self-preservation, which is demonstrated through video footage of Jerry cutting away from where a mine is so a fellow minesweeper gets blown up instead.[1]

See also


  1. ^ a b Director: Michael Tolkin. "Jerry Was a Man". Masters of Science Fiction. Season 1. Episode 3. USA.

External links

Assignment in Eternity

Assignment in Eternity, is a collection of four science fiction and science fantasy novellas by American writer Robert A. Heinlein, first published in hardcover by Fantasy Press in 1953. The stories, some of which somewhat revised from their original magazine publications, were:

"Gulf" (written and published in 1949 in Astounding Science Fiction, October–November 1949).

"Elsewhen", (written in 1939 and first published in 1941 in Astounding Science Fiction of September 1941 as "Elsewhere" by Caleb Saunders)

"Lost Legacy" (written in 1939 but first published in 1941 in Super Science Stories, November 1941 as "Lost Legion" by Lyle Monroe)

"Jerry Was a Man" (written in 1946 and published in 1947 in Thrilling Wonder Stories, October 1947 as "Jerry Is a Man")Heinlein dedicated the book "To Sprague and Catherine": L. Sprague de Camp (his friend and science fiction author) and his wife Catherine Crook de Camp.

Assignment in Eternity was almost immediately picked up for mass market paperback publication by New American Library's Signet line and is currently (as of 2007) offered by Baen Books in trade paper format, with a republication of Heinlein's Future History chart, even though none of the stories falls into the Future History as detailed in The Past Through Tomorrow and Time Enough for Love.

The four stories are loosely related as speculation on what—that we are not already aware of—makes one a human. "Jerry Is a Man" makes the most straightforward examination of the theme, a court making a legal ruling on the human rights of genetically engineered intelligent creatures. "Gulf", a story connected by its story materials to Kuttner's Baldy stories and Wilmar Shiras' In Hiding, suggests that superior individuals already living among us might become a new step in hominid evolution; "Lost Legacy" suggests that every person has unused paranormal abilities that can be awakened by esoteric training comparable to that used by the supermen of "Gulf". "Elsewhen" suggests that the human mind is not bound to our here-and-now "slum of space-time" but can go voyaging into alternative timetracks of possibility. Although written in 1939, using materials popularized by J. W. Dunne, the story has gained new currency in the wake of the Wheeler-Everett "Many Worlds" hypothesis.

The story materials of all four novellas were revisited by Heinlein in later, more expansive novels. A number of figures of "Lost Legacy", for example, are carried into Stranger in a Strange Land (1961), a book which ultimately could be said to have the same theme as the 1939 novella. Situations and individuals from both "Gulf" and "Jerry Was a Man" are examined in Friday (1982). And the "multiverse" concept first explored in "Elsewhen" gets very full treatment in Heinlein's last novels, particularly The Number of the Beast (1980), The Cat Who Walks Through Walls (1985) and To Sail Beyond the Sunset (1987)


The chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), also known as the common chimpanzee, robust chimpanzee, or simply "chimp," is a species of great ape, with four confirmed subspecies and a fifth proposed subspecies. The chimpanzee, along with the closely related bonobo (sometimes called the pygmy chimpanzee), is a species in the genus Pan. Evidence from fossils and DNA sequencing shows both species of the genus Pan constitute a sister taxon to the modern human lineage.

The chimpanzee is covered in coarse black hair, but has a bare face, fingers, toes, palms of the hands, and soles of the feet. It is considered more robust than the bonobo, weighing between 40 and 65 kg (88 and 143 lb) and measuring about 63 to 94 cm (25 to 37 in). Its gestation period is eight months. The infant is weaned at about three years old, but usually maintains a close relationship with its mother for several more years; it reaches puberty at the age of 8 to 10. Its lifespan in the wild can exceed 40 years and its lifespan in captivity is about 50 years.The chimpanzee lives in groups which range in size from 15 to 150 members, although individuals travel and forage in much smaller groups during the day. The species lives in a male-dominated, strict hierarchy, which means disputes can generally be settled without the need for violence. Nearly all chimpanzee populations have been recorded using tools, modifying sticks, rocks, grass and leaves and using them for acquiring honey, termites, ants, nuts and water. The species has also been found creating sharpened sticks to spear Senegal bushbabies out of small holes in trees.

The chimpanzee is listed on the IUCN Red List as an endangered species. Between 170,000 and 300,000 individuals are estimated across its range in the forests and savannahs of West and Central Africa. The biggest threats to the chimpanzee are habitat loss, poaching and disease.

Connie Willis

Constance Elaine Trimmer Willis (born December 31, 1945), commonly known as Connie Willis, is an American science fiction and fantasy writer. She has won eleven Hugo Awards and seven Nebula Awards for particular works—more major awards than any other writer—most recently the "Best Novel" Hugo and Nebula Awards for Blackout/All Clear (2010). She was inducted by the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2009 and the Science Fiction Writers of America named her its 28th SFWA Grand Master in 2011.Several of her works feature time travel by history students at a faculty of the future University of Oxford—sometimes called the Time Travel series. They are the short story "Fire Watch" (1982, also in several anthologies and the 1985 collection of the same name), the novels Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog (1992 and 1997), as well as the two-part novel Blackout/All Clear (2010). All four won the annual Hugo Award but Doomsday Book and Blackout/All Clear won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards.

Laura Karpman

Laura Anne Karpman (born March 1, 1959, in Los Angeles) is an American composer, whose work has included music for film, television, video games, theater, and the concert hall. She has won four Emmy Awards for her work. Karpman was trained at The Juilliard School, where she played jazz, and honed her skills scatting in bars.

List of science fiction short stories

This is a non-comprehensive list of short stories with significant science fiction elements.

List of sources for anthology series

Many anthology series made for television have been based on literary sources. These sources have gone back as far as Chaucer (The Canterbury Tales) and have included works by classic writers such as Edgar Allan Poe (The Black Cat from Masters of Horror) and Mark Twain (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn from Climax!).

Malcolm McDowell

Malcolm McDowell (born Malcolm John Taylor; 13 June 1943) is an English actor, known for his boisterous and sometimes villainous roles. He trained as an actor at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.

In a career spanning over 50 years, McDowell has played varied film roles across different genres as a character actor. He is perhaps best known for the controversial roles of Alex DeLarge in Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange (1971), the title character in Tinto Brass's Caligula (1979), and Mick Travis in Lindsay Anderson's trilogy of if.... (1968), O Lucky Man! (1973) and Britannia Hospital (1982). He has appeared in films such as Time After Time (1979), Cat People (1982), Star Trek Generations (1994), Tank Girl (1995), Gangster No. 1 (2000), as Dr. Samuel Loomis in the 2007 remake of Halloween and its 2009 sequel, Halloween II, Easy A (2010) and The Artist (2011).

McDowell has had a string of roles on numerous television series such as Entourage (2006–2007; 2009–2011), Heroes (2007–2008), Franklin & Bash (2011–2014) and Mozart in the Jungle (2014–2018). He narrated the documentary The Compleat Beatles (1982), and in recent years has become a prolific voice actor in films, television series and video games such as Metalocalypse (2007–2012), Bolt (2008), Fallout 3 (2008), God of War III (2010), Call of Duty: Black Ops III (2015) and The Elder Scrolls Online (2015). He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2012.

Masters of Science Fiction

Masters of Science Fiction is an American television anthology series by some of the producers of Masters of Horror. The show debuted on ABC on August 4, 2007 at 10PM for a run of four episodes. It was originally scheduled to run in six parts, but two episodes were removed from the schedule for undisclosed reasons.The show follows a similar format as Masters of Horror, with each hour long episode taking the form of a separate short film adaptation of a story by a respected member of the science fiction community, hence the Masters in the title.In December 2007, the show was picked up by Space in Canada. This was followed by the North American premiere of the missing two episodes. A Region 1 DVD of all six episodes was released on August 5, 2008. On February 12, 2012, the Science Channel began airing the episodes, under the title Stephen Hawking's Sci-Fi Masters, beginning with the first domestic airing of the episode "Watchbirds".The show is hosted off-screen by physicist Stephen Hawking.

Off the Main Sequence

Off the Main Sequence: The Other Science Fiction Stories of Robert A. Heinlein (ISBN 1-58288-184-7) is a collection of 27 short stories by American writer Robert A. Heinlein, including three that were never previously collected in book form.

The title is a play on the astronomy concept off the main sequence.

Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special

This is a list of winners and nominees of the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series, Movie, or Special.

Starting in 2019, the category recognizes scripted programs. Unscripted programs compete for Music Composition for a Documentary Series or Special.

Robert A. Heinlein bibliography

The science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988) was productive during a writing career that spanned the last 49 years of his life; the Robert A. Heinlein bibliography includes 32 novels, 59 short stories and 16 collections published during his life. Four films, two TV series, several episodes of a radio series, and a board game derive more or less directly from his work. He wrote a screenplay for one of the films. Heinlein edited an anthology of other writers' SF short stories.

Three non-fiction books and two poems have been published posthumously. One novel has been published posthumously and another, an unusual collaboration, was published in 2006. Four collections have been published posthumously.

Heinlein's fictional works can be found in the library under PS3515.E288, or under Dewey 813.54. Known pseudonyms include Anson MacDonald (7 times), Lyle Monroe (7), John Riverside (1), Caleb Saunders (1), and Simon York (1). All the works originally attributed to MacDonald, Saunders, Riverside and York, and many of the works originally attributed to Lyle Monroe, were later reissued in various Heinlein collections and attributed to Heinlein.

Sonja Bennett

Sonja Bennett (born August 24, 1980) is a Canadian actress and screenwriter. Her film debut was in the Canadian feature film Punch (2002), for which she won the Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actress in a Canadian Film. She has since starred in the films Donovan's Echo, Cole, Control Alt Delete, Young People Fucking, and Fido as well as the television series Godiva's and Cold Squad. In 2014, Bennett made her screenwriting debut with Preggoland in which she also starred.

The SFWA Grand Masters, Volume 1

The SFWA Grand Masters, Volume 1 is an anthology of science fiction short works edited by Frederik Pohl. It was first published in hardcover by Tor Books in June 1999, and in trade paperback by the same publisher in August 2001. It has been translated into Italian.The book collects eighteen novelettes, short stories and essays by Robert A. Heinlein, Jack Williamson, Clifford D. Simak, L. Sprague de Camp and Fritz Leiber, the five initial SFWA Grand Masters named by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America between 1975 and 1981, together with a general introduction and introductions and recommended reading lists for each Grand Master by the editor.

Uplift (science fiction)

In science fiction, uplift is a developmental process to transform a certain species of animals into more intelligent beings by other, already-intelligent beings. This is usually accomplished by cultural, technological, or evolutional interventions like genetic engineering but any fictional or real process can be used. The earliest appearance of the concept is in H. G. Wells' 1896 novel The Island of Doctor Moreau, and more recently appears in David Brin's Uplift series and other science fiction works.

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