Alison Looney's Reviews > Foundation

Foundation by Isaac Asimov
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Aug 22, 08


I enjoy reading science fiction, and even seek it out when I'm ready for a break from well-written books in which nothing really happens. As with all sci-fi, there were some great ideas in this book, psychohistory chief among them. Much like psychology predicts behavior, psychohistory predicts large, sweeping patterns through time. The book then explores influence, power, and control within the frame of psychohistory. Some interesting questions and themes come along - does the individual matter in events that occur on such a huge scale? Who has access to this knowledge - specifically of psychohistory, but also of scientific advancement or religion?

So, all right, that seems pretty cool. Unfortunately, the loosely-structured plot isn't engaging enough to sustain these ideas. Just as one character or circumstance becomes compelling, that part of the story ends and we zoom off into the distant future. Doesn't help that most characters are bland and have silly names.

And I know this book is a product of its time, but my inner feminist was getting pretty annoyed by this male dominated universe. So far as I can remember, there's only one woman with lines, and she just shows up to admire some radioactive jewelry. Men are out shaping the fate of the universe while women are entranced by glowing necklaces.

So, to my friends who don't like science fiction, this is a definite "do not read." Pretend I gave this two stars. However, if you like modern sci-fi and are curious to see the genre in its infancy, it would be worth checking out. You can stick with the three star rating.
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H.yassine I didn't finish it yet (I've read 41% of it), and I noticed that all the main characters are male.


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