Tuesday, 11 December 2012

books l read in egypt (#1) we - yevgeny zamyatin

Well, l finally got around to finishing this while away in Egypt (Sharm el-Sheikh), as l had been starting and stopping it for some time, mainly because l was reading it at night while l was tired at work.  'We' (by Yevgeny Zamyatin) tells the story of a glass covered and bleak dystopian future, where everything is state controlled, and kept in order by 'One State', until some of the citizens (who have no names, only numbers) decide to rebel and go back to the old days and break down the (literal) green wall separating them from nature.  They try to enlist D-503, the architect of a rocket, who falls in love with one of them (1-330).  However, he feels he may be being used, and thinks the rebels goals are insane as (to him) everything is logical and perfect, but he slowly starts to come around to their way of thinking.  In the meantime, the state fights back by ordering compulsory  'Great Operations', basically a lobotomy that will put the populace back under their control.  From 1921, and the first book to be banned by the Soviet censorship board, it's well worth sticking with, even if it does take some time, and it's weird to think that Zamyatin got some of the ideas for the book while working in the shipyards at Jesmond, Newcastle (just up the road from me).

toodle pip

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