Frank Views Archive

Welcome to Frank Views

Frank BertrandHere you will find some of the pieces written by and of interest to Frank Bertrand. His ideas of philosophy and religion are drawn from many sources, including Philip K. Dick. Enjoy these pieces, many of them published here for the first time. They are intended to stimulate discourse and raise alternate points of view.

An important goal of “Frank Views” is to get all of us to think twice about our cherished ideas and beliefs about PKD, as well as cogently explore and explicate the motifs, themes, and ideas in his fiction AND non-fiction.

If you’d like to comment on these opinions, please post it in the comment box at the end of the essay.


On Political Satire in P.K. Dick’s “The Man Who Japed”
Some 25 years after it was published Phil Dick said of The Man Who Japed , “That was my attempt to introduce humor into the science fiction novel… it does have, for the first time, my sense of humor is beginning to show up in a novel.”

Dear Phil Letter #6
Frank’s sixth epistolary discourse with Phil Dick about his connection to the world’s philosophical traditions.

Dear Phil Letter #5
Frank’s fifth epistolary discourse with Phil Dick. In this letter, he discusses PKD’s Martian Time Slip, Carl Jung and human consciousness.

Dear Phil Letter #4
Frank’s fourth epistolary discourse with Phil Dick about pre-Socratic philosophy and Carl Jung.

Philip K. Dick’s Final Interview
A final interview with science fiction’s boldest visionary, who talks candidly about Blade Runner, inner voices and the temptations of Hollywood. Transcribed in two parts from Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone Magazine, Vol. 2, No. 3, June 1982.

The Philip K. Dick Van Dyke Show
A review of a show performed before a live audience on March 24, 1989 by members of The Post-Void Radio Theater and Shockwave at Minicon 24, which was held over Easter weekend at the Radisson South Hotel in Bloomington, Minnesota. The ostensible premise of PKDVDS involves Philip K. Dick Van Dyke, who is the head writer for the Nicholas Brady Television Show (produced by Leo Bulero). Thanks to Frank Bertrand for providing the review to the site.

Interview with Tod Machover
Composer of the Valis Opera based on the Philip K. D
ick novel. Machover discusses the forces which led to the creation of this piece and Philip K. Dick’s influence on his work. Transcribed by Frank Bertrand.

Dear Phil Letter #3
Frank’s third epistolary discourse with Phil Dick about the influence of Spinoza, Plotinus and Gnosticism on his work.

Dear Phil Letter #2
Frank’s second epistolary discourse with Phil Dick about the influence of German philosophy on his work.

“How Jeet Heer Betrayed Philip K. Dick Admirers to Marxist Literary Critics”
Frank’s criticism of the controversial article “Marxist Literary Critics Are Following Me!” in a recent issue of LinguaFranca. –

Between the Idea and the Reality: the Hollow Men in Time Out of Joint
The publication of T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Hollow Men” occured in 1925 while that of Philip K. Dick’s novel Time Out of Joint was thirty-four years later in 1959. In spite of this time difference there is a credible connection between these two works, one that has been scarcely noted to date. And it derives from PKD’s penchant for, at times, carefully seeding his stories and novels with literary allusions.

Dear Phil: An Epistolary Discourse
A letter written by Frank Bertrand from the point of view of all writers. In it Frank shares his thoughts with Phil about philosophy and Phil’s claim that he was an “acosmic pantheist.”

Philip K. Dick on Philosophy: A Brief Interview
Conducted by Frank Bertrand by mail in January 1980. This interview also appears in The Shifting Realities of Philip Dick. This is the debut of the interview on the Internet.

Internet Exclusive – Published here for the first time! An Interview with Philip K. Dick By Nita J. Petrunio. Thanks to Frank and Claudia Krenz Bush for sharing this unique conversation with Phil. 

Internet Exclusive –
Vertex Interview with Philip K. Dick By Arthur Byron Cover. Conducted in 1974, this is the first interview with the author to appear in English. A must-read.

Internet Exclusive –
An Interview With Philip K. Dick From Science Fiction Review by Daniel DePerez. From 1976, a rare interview in which Dick discusses his work and career, politics and much more. (Large file – 50K but worth it!)

Encounters with Reality: P.K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly

Kant’s “noumenal self” and Doppelganger in P.K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly

Digressions on Eye In The Sky

Digressions on The Man Who Japed

Digressions on Allusions in P.K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly

Slivers of Sensibility: On The Splintered Shards

The Use of Setting in P.K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly

Tumultuous Wayfarer – A Review On Philip K. Dick: 40 articles from Science-Fiction Studies.

Something Rich and Strange – P.K. Dick’s “Beyond Lies the Wub”

When Is A Gluck Not A Gluck – A Philosophic Exploration of P.K. Dick’s The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch

Form vs. Content in P.K. Dick’s “The Father-Thing”

Here are some quotes by Philip K. Dick about his influences.



Here is Frank discussing his work and his involvement in the science fiction community:

“My early interest in SF was nurtured by magazines, Ace Doubles, and the SF Book Club. I was initially “hooked” by the work of Robert Heinlein, James Blish, and Philip Jose Farmer. This evolved into a growing fascination with SF in general. I started getting fanzines, attended cons (Worldcons, Boskones, and one Lunacon), and writing LOCs. Then in college (which was interrupted by “trips” to Vietnam and Germany) I majored in Lit and minored in Philosophy and sampled widely in SF looking for writers who used philosophical ideas in their work. After all, wasn’t SF reputed to be a “literature of ideas”?

I also started to seriously study SF (much to the dismay of several professors) via philosophy, literary theory, the articles and books of SF writer/critics, especially Aldiss, Lem, Blish, and Delany, and the ideas of some of my “intellectual heroes,” in particular Swift, Voltaire, Monty Python, Hume, Russell, and the Swedish Chef. But it wasn’t until the late 1960s that I started to consistently and carefully read PKD. I soon found his short stories, novels, and non-fiction an interdisciplinary goldmine of philosophy, literature, history, and religion.

As a way of combining my eclectic interests, and trying to understand the work of PKD better, I began writing essays about his fiction which eventually appeared in serconzines and small press publications in several different countries. I was also fortunate enough to be able to interview him as well as gather a lot of secondary material from around the world about PKD and his writings.

More recently I wrote a series of essays for For Dickheads Only, which apparently and unfortunately has gone into hibernation (Dave Hyde, where are you?). So I’m now continuing on, at the reluctant grandfather stage of my life, via (my thanks to the adventuresome Jason K.), with a page titled after a column I used to do for a serconzine out of the Univ. of Western Australia. And please note that an important goal of “Frank Views” is to get all of us to think twice about our cherished ideas and beliefs about PKD, as well as cogently explore and explicate the motifs, themes, and ideas in his fiction AND non-fiction. I hope a lot of you will want to join in this exploration as well as give me any and all constructive feedback.” (FCB 1/99)

One thought on “Frank Views Archive

  1. I happened to reread this recently, and I think it stands the test of time rather well, but I might be biased!! Nonetheless, I would still argue that The Man Who Japed is an IMPORTANT and transitional work for PKD, in particular his use of humor/black humor. It could also, as well, be his tongue-in-check comment about himself, his writing, and some of his critics.

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