We: New Edition

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Penguin, Aug 1, 1993 - Fiction - 256 pages
2 Reviews
Translated by Natasha Randall
Foreword by Bruce Sterling
Written in 1921, We is set in the One State, where all live for the collective good and individual freedom does not exist. The novel takes the form of the diary of mathematician D-503, who, to his shock, experiences the most disruptive emotion imaginable: love. At once satirical and sobering—and now available in a powerful new translation—We is both a rediscovered classic and a work of tremendous relevance to our own times.

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Awesome predictive fiction of the Soviet abomination and of other totalitarian states. Thank you Mr Gorski for getting me to read this in 1977.

Selected pages


Title Page Copyright Page Introduction
Announcement The Wisest of Lines An Epic Poem
Ballet Harmony Squared X
Jacket Wall The Table
Savage with Barometer Epilepsy
Square Rulers of the World Pleasant and Useful Function
Accident Damned Clear 24 Hours
An Eyelash Taylor Henbane and Lily of the Valley
Discharge Idea Material Zero Cliff
An Authors Duty Swollen Ice The Most Difficult Love
Limit of Function Easter Cross It All
Descent from Heaven Historys Greatest Catastrophe End of the Known
The World Exists A Rash 41 Centigrade
No ContentsCant
Both Women Entropy and Energy Opaque Part of the Body
Threads on the Face Shoots Unnatural Compression

The Irrational Root R13 Triangle
Liturgy Iambs and Trochees CastIron Hand
Letter Membrane Hairy
No I Cant Skip the Contents
Limitation of Infinity Angel Reflections on Poetry
Fog Familiar You An Absolutely Inane Occurrence
Mine Forbidden Cold Floor
Bell MirrorLike Sea My Fate to Burn Forever
Yellow TwoDimensional Shadow Incurable Soul
Through Glass I Died Hallways
Logical Labyrinth Wounds and Plaster Never Again
ThirdOrder Infinitesimal A Sullen Glare Over the Parapet
The Final Number Galileos Mistake Wouldnt It Be Better?
The Great Operation I Have Forgiven Everything A Train Wreck
I Do Not Believe Tractors The Human Chip
No Time for Contents Last Note
Those on Leave A Sunny Night Radio Valkyrie
In a Hoop Carrot Murder
Blank Pages The Christian God About My Mother
Infusorian Doomsday Her Room
A Cigarette Butt
Facts The Bell I Am Certain

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About the author (1993)

Yevgeny Ivanovich Zamyatin (1884-1937) was a naval architect by profession and a writer by nature. His favorite idea was the absolute freedom of the human personality to create, to imagine, to love, to make mistakes, and to change the world. This made him a highly inconvenient citizen of two despotisms, the tsarist and the Communist, both of which exiled him, the first for a year, the latter forever. He wrote short stories, plays, and essays, but his masterpiece is We, written in 1920-21 and soon thereafter translated into most of the languages of the world. It first appeared in Russia only in 1988. It is the archetype of the modern dystopia, or anti-utopia; a great prose poem on the fate that might befall all of us if we surrender our individual selves to some collective dream of technology and fail in the vigilance that is the price of freedom. George Orwell, the author of 1984, acknowledged his debt to Zamyatin. The other great English dystopia of our time, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, was evidently written out of the same impulse, though without direct knowledge of Zamyatin’s We.

Clarence Brown is the author of several works on the Russian poetOsip Mandelstam. He is editor of The Portable Twentieth-Century RussianReader, which contains his translation of Zamyatin’s short story “TheCave,” and of Yury Olesha’s novel Enpy.

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