BORN: October 8, 1920, Tacoma, Washington DIED: February 11, 1986, Madison, Wisconsin IDENTIFICATION: Journalist, novelist, and ecologist known worldwide for the Dune Chronicles: the novel Dune and its five sequels.
SIGNIFICANCE: Frank Herbert was one of the most significant science fiction writers of the twentieth century. In the mid-1960s his landmark novel Dune began the so-called New Wave era of science fiction writing, which has focused on adult themes and serious topics. The Dune Chronicles were part of Herberts attempt to convince readers of the perils of pollution, the necessity for understanding ecology, the threat posed by corrupt governments and religious leaders, and the danger of hero worship. Though similar themes are at play in Herberts other novels and short stories, Dune and the other Dune Chronicle books are his greatest literary successes.