Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Robert Heinlein's "Jerry is a Man" (novelette, human rights, free): A woman's fight for justice for "sub humans"

Illustration accompanying the short story Jerry is a Man by Robert Heinlein in 1943 anthology titled Wonder Story Annual, Vol 2 No 1, edited by Samuel MinesGenerally in the same class as Asimov's much better known "The Bicentennial Man". Instead of a robot who gets full human rights in Asimov's story, it's an uplifted chimpanzee who gets limited rights - that he & his kind not be killed by the corporation that breeds them for profit when they're old or otherwise judged "useless". Relatively slow start, but then the author gets in his element.


Story makes a reference to Roman citizens & their "barbarian" slaves. I wonder if white/black issues from US history influenced it more? But my knowledge of that aspect of US history is limited to Alex Haley's "Roots" & Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" - may be I'm seeing more than warranted.

See also.

  1. Arthur Clarke's "An Ape About the House": Another story of an uplifted chimpanzee who's nearly human, even if not legally.

Collected in.

  1. Samuel Mines (ed)'s "Wonder Story Annual, Vol 2 No 1 (1953 Edition)".

Fact sheet.

First published: Thrilling Wonder Stories, October 1947.
Download full text as part of an anthology's online scans.
Rating: A.
Related: Stories of Robert Heinlein; Uplift stories.