Asimov Essays Online

Asimov Essays Online-2
He did not oppose religious conviction in others, but he frequently railed against superstitious and pseudoscientific beliefs which tried to pass themselves off as genuine science.During his childhood, his father and mother observed Orthodox Jewish traditions, though not as stringently as they had in Petrovichi, and they did not force these beliefs upon Asimov.Asimov was born sometime between October 4, 1919, and January 2, 1920, in Petrovichi shtetl of Smolensk Oblast, RSFSR (now Mahilyow Province, Republic of Belarus) to Anna Rachel Berman Asimov and Judah Asimov, a Jewish family of millers.

He did not oppose religious conviction in others, but he frequently railed against superstitious and pseudoscientific beliefs which tried to pass themselves off as genuine science.During his childhood, his father and mother observed Orthodox Jewish traditions, though not as stringently as they had in Petrovichi, and they did not force these beliefs upon Asimov.Asimov was born sometime between October 4, 1919, and January 2, 1920, in Petrovichi shtetl of Smolensk Oblast, RSFSR (now Mahilyow Province, Republic of Belarus) to Anna Rachel Berman Asimov and Judah Asimov, a Jewish family of millers.

His parents owned a succession of candy stores, and everyone in the family was expected to work in them.

Science fiction pulp magazines were sold in the stores, and he began reading them.

The collection fills 464 boxes, on seventy-one meters of shelf space. In the first volume of his autobiography, he recalls a childhood desire to own a magazine stand in a New York City Subway station, within which he could enclose himself and listen to the rumble of passing trains while reading.

Asimov married Gertrude Blugerman (1917, Canada–1990, Boston) on July 26, 1942. Asimov was afraid of flying, only doing so twice in his entire life (once in the course of his work at the Naval Air Experimental Station, and once returning home from the army base in Oahu in 1946).

Thus he grew up without strong religious influences, coming to believe that the Bible represented Hebrew mythology in the same way that the Iliad recorded Greek mythology.

(For a brief while his father worked in the local synagogue to enjoy the familiar surroundings and "shine as a learned scholar" versed in the sacred writings.

His sense of timing was exquisite; he never looked at a clock, but invariably spoke for precisely the time allocated.

Asimov was a frequent fixture at science fiction conventions, where he remained friendly and approachable.

In his later years, he found he enjoyed traveling on cruise ships, and on several occasions he became part of the cruises' "entertainment," giving science-themed talks on ships such as the RMS Queen Elizabeth 2.

Asimov was an enormously entertaining, prolific, and sought-after public speaker.

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