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Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions
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Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  41,439 Ratings  ·  3,091 Reviews
"How would a creature limited to two dimensions be able to grasp the possibility of a third? Edwin A. Abbott's droll 'romance of many dimensions' explores this conundrum in the experiences of his protagonist, A Square, whose linear world is invaded by an emissary Sphere bringing the gospel of the third dimension on the eve of the new millennium. Part geometry lesson, part ...more
Paperback, 108 pages
Published January 1st 1963 by Barnes & Noble (first published 1884)
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Take a classically styled, 19th century satire about Victorian social mores…dress it up in dimensional geometry involving anthropomorphized shapes (e.g., lines, squares, cubes, etc.)…bathe it in the sweet, scented waters of social commentary…and wrap it all around humble, open-minded Square as protagonist.

The result is Flatland, a unique “classic” parked at the intersection of a number of different genres, thus pinging the radar of a wider than normal audience to appreciate (or detest) it. Sinc
Oct 26, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When you read this book, keep two things in mind. First, it was written back in 1880, when relativity had not yet been invented, when quantum theory was not yet discovered, when only a handful of mathematicians had the courage (yet) to challenge Euclid and imagine curved space geometries and geometries with infinite dimensionality. As such, it is an absolutely brilliant work of speculative mathematics deftly hidden in a peculiar but strangely amusing social satire.

Second, its point, even about i
Michael Finocchiaro
A curious little novella about a man a two-dimensional world thinking literally out of the box. First he explains his world in which the angles you have the higher social status you have in Flatland - Circles being the highest rank. He meets someone from Lineland (one-dimensional) who is incapable of understanding Flatland and he meets Sphere from Spaceland (three dimenions) and he is able himself to comprehend the difference between "up" and "North". However, Sphere cannot extrapolate to 4+ dim ...more
I give it an extra star for it's originality, it's uniqueness. The concept was genius, Abbott was probably a math genius himself. However, as a work of literature it does not hold up well. It has a shadowy similarity to Gulliver's Travels, but falls well short of that Swift classic.
Jan 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book should not be read in hopes of finding an entertaining story. As a novel, it's terrible. It's plot (if you can call it that) is simple and contrived. But, it wasn't written as a novel.

Flatland is a mathematical essay, meant to explain a point: that higher dimensions (more than length, depth and width) may be present in our universe, but if they are, it will be nearly impossible for us to understand them.

The story itself consists of a two dimensional world (Flatland), in which there are
Jul 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one crazy, opium fuelled, brilliant book about geometry and different dimensions and I am going to explain it the best way I can but Edwin A Abbott does it so much better.

Here is a story of Square who is a square and lives in a two dimensional world of geometrical figures. The first part of the book talks about the social breakdown of the Flatland and it is a thinly disguised satire on the Victorian society. People are divided into classes according to their geometry and the worst off a
Saleh MoonWalker
Onvan : Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions - Nevisande : Edwin A. Abbott - ISBN : 048627263X - ISBN13 : 9780486272634 - Dar 96 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 1884
Mar 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
“I used to be a renegade, I used to fool around
But I couldn't take the punishment and had to settle down
Now I'm playing it real straight, and yes, I cut my hair
You might think I'm crazy, but I don't even care
Because I can tell what's going on
It's hip to be square”

Huey Lewis And The News - Hip To Be Square

According to IMDB, several film adaptations have been made of Flatland, but no blockbusting Pixar / DreamWorks extravaganza just yet. If they do make one I can’t imagine a more appropriate t
Nandakishore Varma
At the outset... the 5 stars are entirely subjective. I love maths, I love playing mathematical games, I love philosophising about maths. So this book is perfect for me. But if maths is not your cup of tea, you may not enjoy it as much as I did.

I first read about this book in one of Martin Gardner's "Mathematical Games" anthologies, and was enthralled by the concept. (In fact, he discusses two books: Flatland by Edwin A. Abbot and An Episode of Flatland by Charles Hinton written with the same pr
Julie Demar
Oct 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un racconto fantastico a più dimensioni con una velata (neanche poi troppo) critica alla chiusura mentale. Geniale.
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  • The Music of the Primes: Searching to Solve the Greatest Mystery in Mathematics
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  • What Is Mathematics?: An Elementary Approach to Ideas and Methods
  • An Imaginary Tale: The Story of the Square Root of Minus One
  • The Joy of Pi
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  • The Princeton Companion to Mathematics
  • Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences
  • The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure
  • Journey through Genius: The Great Theorems of Mathematics
  • The Planiverse: Computer Contact with a Two-Dimensional World
  • The Man Who Loved Only Numbers: The Story of  Paul Erdős and the Search for Mathematical Truth
  • Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea
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  • A History of π
From Biography Base:

Edwin Abbott Abbott (December 20, 1838 - 1926), English schoolmaster and theologian, is best known as the author of the mathematical satire Flatland (1884).

He was educated at the City of London School and at St John's College, Cambridge, where he took the highest honours in classics, mathematics and theology, and became fellow of his college. In 1862 he took orders. After holdi
More about Edwin A. Abbott...
“...learn this lesson, that to be self-contented is to be vile and ignorant, and that to aspire is better than to be blindly and impotently happy..” 48 likes
“Upward, not Northward” 37 likes
More quotes…