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Gor, the Counter-Earth, is the alternate world setting for John Normanís "Chronicles of Gor," a series of 26 already published novels that combine reactionary philosophy, soft science fiction, and BDSM erotica. Real-life followers of the philosophies outlined in the books are called Goreans.

Table of contents

Series Summary Gor is an intricately detailed world in terms of flora, fauna, and customs. Norman also delights in ethnography, populating his planet with the equivalents of Roman, Native American, Viking, and other races. The Gorean humans have advanced architectural and medical skills (including life extension), but are primitive in the fields of transportation and weaponry -- at approximately the level of Classical Mediterranean civilization. Action, both strategic and tactical/logistical, borrows liberally from historic engagements, such as one cityís maintenance of a ďmargin of desolationĒ similar to that maintained at Mesopotamiaís Gu-Edin[?]. Norman is a competent classicist and sociologist, although his prose, fraught with unnecessary punctuation, diction, and tangents, is less solid.

To understand the philosophical and sexual foundations of the series, please see: John Norman.


  1. Tarnsman of Gor (1967)
  2. Outlaw of Gor (1967)
  3. Priest-Kings of Gor (1968)
  4. Nomads of Gor (1969)
  5. Assassin of Gor (1970)
  6. Raiders of Gor (1971)
  7. Captive of Gor (1972)
  8. Hunters of Gor (1974)
  9. Marauders of Gor (1975)
  10. Tribesman of Gor (1976)
  11. Slave Girl of Gor (1977)
  12. Beasts of Gor (1978)
  13. Explorers of Gor (1979)
  14. Fighting Slave of Gor (1981)
  15. Rogue of Gor (1981)
  16. Guardsman of Gor (1981)
  17. Savages of Gor (1982)
  18. Blood Brothers of Gor (1982)
  19. Kajira of Gor (1983)
  20. Players of Gor (1984)
  21. Mercenaries of Gor (1985)
  22. Dancer of Gor (1986)
  23. Renegades of Gor (1986)
  24. Vagabonds of Gor (1987)
  25. Magicians of Gor (1988)
  26. Witness of Gor (2001)

General Notes

Most of the books are narrated by transplanted New England professor Tal Cabot, master swordsman and possibly Normanís alter-ego, as he engages in adventures involving Priest-Kings, Kurii, and humans alike. Books 7, 11, 19, and 26 are narrated by abducted earth women who are made slaves. Books 14-16 are narrated by abductee and male slave Jason Marshal.

Besides humans, the main races in his narrative are the insectoid Priest-Kings and the ogre-esque Kurii. Some critics have commented that these antipoles are a warning for moderate human behavior, for the ultra-rationalist, unromantic Priest-Kings see little point in their existence, and the sanguine Kurii who kill anyone, lacking morals to check themselves.

Norman reputedly began the series after wagering that he could write a sword and sorcery novel that would sell successfully. Early entries in the series were simple plot-driven space opera adventures, with later entries growing more heavily theoretical.

Normanís greatest works are considered his first third. Although sexual bondage and BDSM has always been present, their ubiquity, as well as that of its philosophical and psychological justifications, gradually increased to the point of detracting from the plots. Possible reasons include Normanís use of his then-popular series to battle the emerging feminist movement, or demand for his books was so great that they were printed without editing. In any case, the significant readership among people uncomfortable with either BDSM or his distracting justifications was lost.

See also: Sex in science fiction

Current State Norman has allegedly completed another book, Prize of Gor, which has yet to be printed.

External Links

In Pygmy mythology, Gor is a mythical elephant and a messenger for the supreme god Khonvoum[?].

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