Volume 12, Number 4, Fall, 1994

In Memoriam—Robert Shea, 1933-1994

By Victoria Varga

Robert Shea—co-author with Robert Anton Wilson of the cult classic, the Illuminatus trilogy—died of cancer on March 10th of this year.

A tireless worker for LFS, he wrote several articles for Prometheus, helped set up the Prometheus Award ceremony at Chicon V in 1991, and kindly wrote to me with helpful advice when I needed it most. He was not above blowing his own horn, either, and is the only Prometheus Hall of Fame winner who had to nominate his own novel for the prize.

He gave the following five reasons for the failure of other LFS members to nominate Illuminatus for him:

(1) It was just an oversight; (2) Everybody was expecting someone else to do it; (3) The Advisory membership of the Libertarian Futurists is not representative of libertarian/anarchist science fiction fans; (4) The Goddess Eris wants me to know how she felt when she wasn't invited to the party on Mount Olympus; (5) It is the work of a conspiracy.

I liked that last reason the best, but the trilogy won that year (1986), and any conspirators were foiled.

Besides the Illuminatus trilogy, Robert Shea wrote many other books, including the very compelling, Shaman, a historical novel (1991) about the nineteenth century Blackhawk wars in Illinois seen through the eyes of a young man with ties to both cultures. Some of his other titles include All Things are Lights, Shiké, and Lady Yang, as well as The Saracens: Land of the Infidel, and The Saracens: The Holy War.

His books never failed to say something important about humanity, about freedom, about justice, and many of us will miss him, and the work that he might have accomplished.

All trademarks and copyrights property of their owners.
Creative Commons License
Prometheus, the newsletter of the Libertarian Futurists Society, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.