Bob's Reviews > Looking Backward: 2000-1887

Looking Backward by Edward Bellamy
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's review
Jan 25, 2009

liked it
Read in August, 2008

This is one of the books that I did not feel obliged to finish and don't feel faintly guilty, having "gotten the idea". The narrator has become displaced in time, going to sleep in 1887 Boston and waking up in 2000. Since the former year is when the novel was written, it fits into the ontological category of "the past's notion of what the future would be like" which we enjoy everywhere from H.G. Wells to William Gibson to Saarinen's TWA Terminal building ( )

However, technological predictions aside, it is the novel's utopian vision of an idealized social organization which makes it exemplary of the Progressive era in which it was written. This utopia, you may not be surprised to hear, has rather a lot of the benign fascism of Plato's Republic in its makeup. Not for me, but maybe you?

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