Superiority (short story)

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Author Arthur C. Clarke
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Genre(s) Science fiction
Published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction
Publisher Fantasy House
Publication date August 1951

"Superiority" is a science fiction short story by Arthur C. Clarke, first published in 1951. It depicts an arms race, and shows how the side which is more technologically advanced can be defeated, despite its apparent superiority, because of its own organizational flaws and its willingness to discard old technology without having fully perfected the new. Meanwhile, the enemy steadily built up a far larger arsenal of weapons that while more primitive were also more reliable. The story was at one point required reading for an industrial design course at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[1]


"Superiority" was included in Clarke's 1953 anthology Expedition to Earth, the 1981 anthology The 7 Cardinal Virtues of Science Fiction (where it represented temperance), and the 2001 anthology The Best Military Science Fiction of the 20th Century.

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  1. ^ Current Biography Yearbook, Volume 27. H.W. Wilson Company. 1966. p. 51. 

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