CoDominium

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CoDominium is a series of future history novels written by American writer Jerry Pournelle, along with several co-authors, primarily Larry Niven.

Series[edit]

Title Publication date Author(s) Type Series Chronology Notes
A Spaceship for the King 1973 J.E. Pournelle serialized novel Moties series later expanded into King David's Spaceship
"He Fell into a Dark Hole" 1973 J.E. Pournelle short story CoDominium series collected in There Will Be War, Vol 5
The Mote in God's Eye 1974 Larry Niven & J.E. Pournelle novel Moties series
"Motelight" 1976 Larry Niven short story Moties series prologue to The Mote in God's Eye
Birth of Fire 1976 J.E. Pournelle novel CoDominium series
West of Honor 1976 J.E. Pournelle novel Falkenberg series incorporated into Falkenberg's Legion
The Mercenary 1977 (February) J.E. Pournelle novel Falkenberg series incorporated into Falkenberg's Legion
High Justice 1977 (May) J.E. Pournelle anthology CoDominium series collected in Exile—and Glory
Exiles to Glory 1978 J.E. Pournelle novel CoDominium series collected in Exile—and Glory
King David's Spaceship 1980 J.E. Pournelle novel Moties series expanded from A Spaceship for the King
"Reflex" 1982 Larry Niven & J.E. Pournelle short story Moties series The cut first chapter of The Mote in God's Eye; collected in There Will Be War, Vol. 1 and Infinite Stars
"In Memoriam: Howard Grote Littlemead" 1984 Larry Niven poem Moties series rewrite of "Motelight"
War World, Vol 1: The Burning Eye 1988 various anthology War World series
Prince of Mercenaries 1989 J.E. Pournelle novel Falkenberg series collected in The Prince
Falkenberg's Legion 1990 J.E. Pournelle anthology Falkenberg series collected in The Prince
War World, Vol 2: Death's Head Rebellion 1990 various anthology War World series
Go Tell the Spartans 1991 S. M. Stirling & J.E. Pournelle novel Falkenberg series collected in The Prince
War World, Vol 3: Sauron Dominion 1991 various anthology War World series
CoDominium: Revolt on WarWorld 1992 (July) various anthology War World series
War World: Blood Feuds 1992 (December) various novel War World series
The Gripping Hand 1993 (January) Larry Niven & J.E. Pournelle novel Moties series also titled The Moat Around Murcheson's Eye
Prince of Sparta 1993 (March) S. M. Stirling & J.E. Pournelle novel Falkenberg series collected in The Prince
Exiles to Glory: Revised Edition 1993 (December) J.E. Pournelle novel CoDominium series revised edition of Exiles to Glory
War World: Blood Vengeance 1994 (January) various novel War World series
War World, Vol 4: Invasion 1994 (August) various anthology War World series
The Prince 2002 S.M. Stirling & J.E. Pournelle omnibus Falkenberg series a compilation of Prince of Mercenaries, Falkenberg's Legion, Go Tell the Spartans, Prince of Sparta, and exclusive bonus content
War World: The Battle of Sauron 2007 John F. Carr and Don Hawthorne novel War World series an expanded version was printed in ebook form in 2013
Exile—and Glory 2008 J.E. Pournelle omnibus CoDominium series a compilation of High Justice and Exiles to Glory
Outies 2010 (April) J.R. Pournelle novel Moties series
War World: Discovery 2010 (August) various anthology War World series
War World: Takeover 2011 various anthology War World series
War World: Jihad! 2012 John F. Carr anthology War World series
War World: The Lidless Eye 2013 (January) John F. Carr and Don Hawthorne novel War World series
War World: The Battle of Sauron - 2nd Edition 2013 (February) John F. Carr and Don Hawthorn novel War World series expanded ebook version of War World: The Battle of Sauron
War World: Cyborg Revolt 2013 (August) John F. Carr and Don Hawthorne novel War World series
War World, Vol 1: The Burning Eye - 2nd Edition 2015 various anthology (reissue with new material) War World series
War World: The Patriotic Wars 2017 various anthology War World series
War World: Falkenberg’s Regiment 2018 various novel War World series
War World: The Fall of the CoDominium 2019 various anthology War World series

Setting[edit]

Formation of the CoDominium[edit]

The point of departure of Pournelle's history is the establishment of the CoDominium (CD), a political alliance and union between the United States of America and a revitalized Soviet Union. This union, achieved in the name of planetary stability, reigns over the Earth for over a hundred years. In that time, it achieves peace of a sort, as well as interstellar colonization, but at the price of a complete halt in both scientific and political evolution.

The CoDominium (CD) is a supranational alliance of the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. This alliance eventually becomes a de facto planetary government, and later, an interstellar empire. Despite this, no other nations on Earth are given representation or membership. Other major powers become mere client states. It is governed by a "Grand Senate", which is composed of Senators chosen from the two superpowers. A CoDominium Council exists and appears to function as a judicial branch. The CD did not unify the United States and the USSR, who appear to retain their separate identities and mutual distrust. The CD was only created for the shared benefit of the two member states. It does not govern either nation, and each state has been allowed to retain their government structures, nationalities, militaries, and to run their own internal affairs.

The United States of the CoDominium Era is a welfare state divided into two social classes: Citizens and Taxpayers. "Citizens" are welfare dependents who are required to live in walled sections of cities called "Welfare Islands." People are given whatever they need, including the drugs like Borloi to keep them pacified. There are no limits to how long they can stay on welfare, except that they must live in a Welfare Island. Although people are free to gain an education and work or become a colonist, many citizens did not, preferring to live their whole lives supported by the government. Generally citizens are uneducated and illiterate. Some BuReLoc involuntary colonists are Citizens. By the late CD era, the Welfare Islands were three generations old. "Taxpayers" are the working, educated, and privileged upper class. They carry identification cards to separate them from Citizens.

The Empire is organized by sectors, ruled by a Viceroy who serves as a representative of the Crown. Each sector has its own Council, headed by a Lord President, and its own Parliament. The Imperial government is divided into several ministries, including External Affairs, War, and Science. Some planets are governed by an aristocracy, although at least one member world is a republic.

For the most part, the stars with inhabitable planets in the CoDominium are obscure and unnamed on current star charts. For instance, the world of New Washington and its sister planet Franklin orbit a red dwarf at some distance from the Solar System. Such stars are very common in the galaxy but even the closest ones are too dim to observe without equipment, Proxima Centauri being the obvious example. Other habitable systems in the CoDominium have stars in the stellar classes F, G and K, which are common but dim compared to the named stars in the night sky. One of the few stars explicitly named in the CoDominium stories is 82 Eridani, containing the Meiji colony. Viewed from Earth, 82 Eridani is a star of the fourth magnitude at 20 light-years distance. Beyond 50 light-years such stars are below sixth magnitude and therefore invisible to the naked eye, so they are unnamed and largely unrecorded, except in astronomical sky surveys. These are the stars likely to host colonies of the CoDominium. There is no mention in the canon of closer candidate systems such as Tau Ceti and Epsilon Indi.

During the CoDominium era, instantaneous interstellar travel as a result of the Alderson Drive easily gave humanity the ability to explore, colonize, and exploit various star systems. As a result, many of the space settlements are on planets that are similar to Earth. At the very least, a colony world was barely inhabitable for human life without technological support. Many colonies were founded by ethnic minorities, religious groups, or political groups. Some are started by businesses, for commercial reasons. Most lack an industrial base, and have little advanced technology as a result. The elite, more technologically advanced colonies are ones settled and supported by the Earth countries. These elite worlds have their own fleets and enjoy some independence from the CD.

These are apparently systems which retained enough technology after the Secession Wars to present a threat to the Second Empire, by resisting takeover and mounting raids against Empire systems. The presence or threat of Outies is mentioned in all the Second Empire stories as a reason for the Imperial Navy having to deal with events in the most expeditious way possible, rather than allowing time to achieve ideal solutions.

Pournelle's daughter, Jennifer R. Pournelle, has drawn on these themes, writing Outies, an authorized sequel[1] to King David's Spaceship, The Mote in God's Eye, and The Gripping Hand, that attempts to marry hard science fiction with social science fiction as it explores what it means to be an "alien" in this Empire, and to what degree biology is destiny.[2] Outies was first published as an e-book[citation needed] in 2010, and was then released in trade paperback [3] in Q1, 2011.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Outies, New Brookland Press – Outies
  2. ^ Outies, Gender Neutrality and Social Science Fiction: An Interview with Jennifer Pournelle, By K. Kris Hirst Archived 2011-02-16 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ "Createspace - Outies". Archived from the original on 2012-03-20. Retrieved 2011-04-15.

External links[edit]