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Samuel R. Delany’s The Jewel-Hinged Jaw first appeared in 1977. Its demonstration that science fiction is a special language, rather than gadgets and green-skinned aliens, had an impact that reverberates today in science fiction criticism. Close textual analyses of Thomas M. Disch, Ursula K. Le Guin, Roger Zelazny, and Joanna Russ read as brilliantly today as when they first appeared.