Edward Frederick James (born 14 May 1947) is a British scholar of medieval history and science fiction. He is Emeritus Professor of Medieval History at University College, Dublin. James received the Hugo Award for his non-fiction book The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction (co-edited with Farah Mendlesohn), and the Pilgrim Award for lifetime contribution to SF and fantasy scholarship.
James was born in Solihull, Warwickshire. He attended the Solihull School and read Modern History at St John's College, Oxford (1965-1968). He completed postgraduate work at the Institute of Archaeology, Oxford, 1968-1970, supervised by Professor Christopher Hawkes. James was awarded D.Phil in 1975, for a thesis entitled ‘South-West Gaul from the fifth to the eighth century: the contribution of archaeology’. He began teaching in 1970 at University College, Dublin.
He was a lecturer at the Department of Medieval History in University College Dublin from 1970 to 1978. He was a lecturer in early medieval history at the Department of History, University of York, 1978 to 1995, as well as Director of the Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York from 1990 to 1995.
He was Professor of Medieval History at the University of Reading from 1995 to 2004 and was a Director of the Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies, 1999–2001. He retired in 2012.
James is the recipient of the 2004 Pilgrim Award for lifetime contribution to science fiction and fantasy scholarship. He has also won the Hugo Award and BSFA Award in the non-fiction category, in addition to multiple nominations for individual works, as detailed in the following table.
|1994||Science Fiction in the Twentieth Century||Eaton Award||Won|
|2000||Terry Pratchett: Guilty of Literature||Hugo Award||Nominated|
|2003||The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction||Hugo Award||Won|
|2009||A Short History of Fantasy||BSFA Award||Nominated|
|2012||The Cambridge Companion to Fantasy Literature||British Fantasy Award||Nominated|
|2014||"Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers in the Great War"||BSFA Award||Won|
|2015||Lois McMaster Bujold||BSFA Award||Nominated|
James married his fellow academic, Farah Mendlesohn in 2001.