Every now and again, someone adds a concept to the human meme-pool1. Many of these were first postulated in scientific works, but some spring from works of fiction.
Here we look at what these concepts say about the thoughts of the authors and the times in which they were formulated. If we focus on the 19th and 20th Centuries, we discover several distinct themes. These concern society as a whole, individual human behaviour, and what one might call visions of the future. The concepts these individuals created or named are mostly very bleak, concerning the crushing of the individual, the shadow-side of humanity, and the unreliability of progress2.