|Auteur:||Michael J. Neufield|
The recent 50th anniversaries of the first human spaceflights by the Soviet Union and the United States, and the 30th anniversary of the launching of the first U.S. Space Shuttle mission, have again brought to mind the pioneering accomplishments of the first quarter century of humans in space. Historians, political scientists and others have extensively examined the technical, programmatic and political history of human spaceflight from the 1960s to the 1980s, but work is only beginning on the social and cultural history of the pioneering era.
One rapidly developing area of recent scholarship is the examination of the images of spacefarers in the media, government propaganda and popular culture. These essays are preceded by an introduction by the editor, who discusses their place in the historiography of spaceflight and social and cultural history.