An Apple Books Classic edition.
What happens when feelings get in the way of order? What is the price of perfecting society? Yevgeny Zamyatin’s We, like many of the dystopian novels that came after it, plays on our fears of being watched and controlled, of human emotions being criminalized. A lively critique of authoritarianism, We holds the honor of being the first book banned by the Soviet government. Zamyatin managed to get a copy of his novel to the United States, where it was published in 1924.
We is set in a future world where there are no individual names—only numbers. The book opens with D-503 sharing the news that the spaceship he’s been building is complete. The United State, which rules Earth, can now find other planets with which to share their “mathematically infallible happiness.” But then, D-503 meets I-330, and despite not being assigned to her, he falls in love. It makes no sense: I-330 smokes, drinks, encourages imagination—all very illegal acts that would result in public execution. So, what will D-503 say when I-330 asks for help with mounting a rebellion against the United State? Pick up a dystopian novel that predates bestsellers like 1984, The Handmaid’s Tale, and Brave New World.
Worth the time
Great book, simple read, still relevant to our society
WE is an out of the ordinary book that brings the reader into a world that feels so familiar and at the same time is so far away.
Where it all started...
It is obvious Orwell had been inspired by this amazing novel for his 1984 book, at a point where one could accuse him of plagiat. What he of course couldn’t copy was Zamiatine’s poetic style, which is delightful, dreamy, almost fantastic -like Maupassant’s best. There is something in between a Lautréamont and a Joyce in his writings... almost surrealistic. This science fiction story is incredibly visionary, it almost feels like the first of a genre, where it all started, the struggle between the techno/rational man and the one dreaming, the one in love, between our thirst for order and control, for undefined happiness, and our very instincts, such as our impossible dreams... This book should definitely be taught in class like Orwell’s Animal Farm or Asimov’s robotic laws. It should also be studied in literature, for it represents an important link between surrealism of the 20’s (1920) and science fiction of the 40’s and 50’s... and, moreover, it is a beautiful gem!
Now one of my favorite book:))