Great French poet, philosopher, and dramatist who was an
outspoken critic of political and religious intolerance. In his satirical
novel Micromegas, Voltaire (pseudonym
of François-Marie Arouet) shrugged off the religious dogma of his
time and speculated freely and humorously on the subject of extraterrestrial
life. Also significant in the history of science fiction is Voltaire's picturesque
satire Candide (1759), in which the utopian Eldorado is described.