Mediaeval and Modern Saints and Miracles
It is the twenty-first century. Suffering from global warming and overpopulation, Earth is opening the solar system to industrialization. One of the largest growth industries - "corrections" - capitalizes on the opportunity, sending convicts to mine asteroids diverted into near-Earth orbits. Like the condemned digging their own graves, the convicts hollow out their own prisons, as the mined-out shells become deep-space cell blocks. Then an administrative genius realizes that the asteroid prisons can be inserted into solar orbits, timed to return to near-Earth space when terms run out. This not only adds further security, it removes the problem of abuse by guards, since they are no longer needed.Human rejects endure the black vise of interstellor space-time - soft bodies in hard shells, surviving along open orbits, free to live and reproduce as they wish, to seek what law they can amongst themselves, never to return....But as Earth's societies recover and prosper, attitudes toward crime and punishment change. The sky's constant reproach spurs a sense of sympathy - and curiosity - about what has happened in these "brute orbits." When an advanced propulsion system makes it possible to overtake the scattered habitats, a courageous team of social scientists sets out to go where no free human has gone before. What they discover about this lost humanity is both provocative and moving.
- Hardback | 320 pages
- 162.56 x 236.22 x 25.4mm | 476.27g
- 01 Sep 1998
- HarperCollins Publishers Inc
- New York, NY, United States