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3.91  ·  Rating details ·  76,804 ratings  ·  4,983 reviews
The citizens of the One State live in a condition of 'mathematically infallible happiness'. D-503 decides to keep a diary of his days working for the collective good in this clean, blue city state where nature, privacy and individual liberty have been eradicated. But over the course of his journal D-503 suddenly finds himself caught up in unthinkable and illegal activities ...more
Paperback, 203 pages
Published June 29th 2011 by Vintage (first published 1920)
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Sal The book is written in a dry manner on purpose. Our narrator is a mathematician, focused on logic, on numbers, on empirical data. The entire world of …moreThe book is written in a dry manner on purpose. Our narrator is a mathematician, focused on logic, on numbers, on empirical data. The entire world of a "soul," of feeling, of disregard for the's all abstraction. There's nothing empirical about what he's experiencing, and he's not much of a poet. Look at the way he loses his mind after having his first dream.

The disjointed, unfinished thoughts are a brilliant way of describing experiences a narrator has no idea how to describe. There is no empirical data for him to utilize in his sentences, and he's far from the world of poetics or free description.

Aside from all of his logic, this is an adult who has only known a self-censored world, and in his disrupted sentences you see how ingrained his sense of society is. It's the sort of thing one would do without fully realizing it. He tries to battle through, but even when he might have the right words, his indoctrination breaks his line of rational thought.(less)
Marisa It is better than you think it is Mikey Inglish.
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Average rating 3.91  · 
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Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
George Orwell, you poser. You punk. You . . . thief! I heard that you had read this before writing 1984. But I didn't expect Zamyatin's writing to be so superior to yours. And it is. It is so much more intriguing than your sterile work. D-503 is so much the better character than Winston. And you rob I-333 of her power and respect by demoting Julia to the role of a sexual object that stirs Winston to action. Yes, D-503 is stirred to action by I-333, but she's the political activist, the intellige ...more
May 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of classic dystopias
It's been a decade since I first read Zamyatin's masterpiece, and even though this book remains unchanged for almost a century now, the person who read it is not. A decade later, I'm a very different person, no longer the wide-eyed undergraduate who thought she had the world all figured out. Time has added a bit more life experience, an overdose of cynicism, a few collisions with the rougher edges of the universe, and a few still subtle grey hairs. Time has dispelled some of the youthful cocky c ...more
Bill Kerwin
Nov 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Let’s play “Guess That Groundbreaking Novel”!

Question: A party functionary who is recording his experiences in a journal lives in a future fascist society which maintains its solidarity by compulsory attendance at public events dominated by a remote, all-powerful leader. He meets a woman, a secret rebel who expresses her revolutionary impulses through her sexuality, and the two of them carry on an affair in room in an old house which symbolizes what life was like in the days before the new soci
Jim Fonseca
This is a classic Russian science-fiction dystopian novel published in 1924 that influenced many following books: 1984 and Brave New World and authors such as Kurt Vonnegut and Ayn Rand. According to Wiki “We is generally considered to be the grandfather of the satirical futuristic dystopia genre.” The book had to be published outside of the USSR because under Stalin the author ended up first imprisoned and later exiled to France. In an Introduction, Foreword and Preface we are told that the boo ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
(707 From 1001 Books) - Мы = We, Yevgeny Zamyatin

We, is 1924 dystonia novel by Russian writer Yevgeny Zamyatin. The novel describes a world of harmony and conformity within a united totalitarian state.

We is set in the future. D-503, a spacecraft engineer, lives in the One State, an urban nation constructed almost entirely of glass, which assists mass surveillance.

The structure of the state is Panopticon-like, and life is scientifically managed F. W. Taylor-style.

People march in step with each
Mar 05, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
We by Yevgeny Zamyatin is a must read for fans and students of the Dystopian genre.

Published in 1920, before Brave New World and well before 1984 (which could even be considered a second generation 1984 as Orwell began his seminal work after reading a French translation of We) Zamyatin’s vision is well before his time.

Writing in response to his experiences with the Bolsheviks but without a direct link to the communists, We takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where pockets of “civilized” hu
The prototype of dystopian fiction - a vivisection of monolithic faith and cruelty in the name of “We”!

Dystopian science fiction never analyses the future, even though it is the supposed topic of the novel. It looks at the past, and follows the road that humanity has already embarked on, to its logical next step. When Zamyatin wrote “We”, the society he knew was rapidly changing, breaking apart, one authoritarian structure was being replaced with another, through the means of a violent clash, a
Feb 10, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sci-fi's in my top 3 least favorite fiction genres. However, this one is thankfully not Brave New World, has traces of madness and poetry both, and possesses the Waltmanesque quality of being organic, though the theme of Dystopian Machinery should be inevitably super-structured. The protagonist's POV is impressive. As builder of a space ship that will provide aliens (or: us) with an account of the glass metropolis (see: communism), he transitions from zombie troglodyte to someone infected with a ...more
Jul 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
- If it was utterly up to me, I'd actually think about classing this more as a "utopia" rather than a "dystopia" understanding that they're ultimately the same thing.
- Living in glass houses is the most terrifying part of this novel.
- I-330 is basically a manic pixie dream girl.
- The commentary on the Russian Revolution and Socialism are heavy, bro.
- Zamyatin had a FASCINATING life that very much influences this book.
- The writing style wasn't my thing. It was by no means bad, but it ju
Henry Avila
Aug 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A city of glass 1,000 years in the future, domed, with a green wall to keep out all the undesirable, primitive life forms. Animal, human, vegetable or insect...A clean and sparkling place for its millions of citizens, everything and everyone has a schedule, the perfect "One State". No privacy, people have numbers for names they dress (light blue uniforms) , and eat the same food, live in small sparse apartments, which are transparent. No drinking or smoking, even sex regulated by yes an appointm ...more
Zamyatin's theme here is the impossibility of being fully human in totalitarian society. His future is not technologically superior. It contains little of what we'd call high-tech. This is still very much the age of steam. The story seems both forward-looking and dated, almost paradoxically so. The mood it inspires is rather like that of Fritz Lang's classic Metropolis. I liked that. It was like finding this artefact of world lit. Another piece in the long history of dystopias—and one that influ ...more
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well, I can see why We by Yevgeny Zamyatin was 'problematic' for the Soviet regime. It unequivocally debunks the utopian collective ideal. Communism (in practice, if not in theory) demands each of its fellow-travelers to exist on a purely atomic level. Good, responsible communists are mere corpuscles in a bland, unfulfilling social body. Sure, economic equality seems like a nice ideal, right? A cute ideal, even? But aside from being virtually impracticable (because humans will always be human), ...more
☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣
Taylor and irrational numbers and calculus must have really made impression on Zamyatin. Just as the ideation of 'sex free for all' that he likely could have perceived around at the time.

Visionary, seer and dystopianist of 1920.
I had noticed 1984 pop up in my feed and more chatter about that and Brave New World in the media, which my thoughts upstream towards their source Zamyatin's 1924 novel We. Zamyatin's book as is the way of books, did not pop out of the void but is itself in dialogue with older books, in particular I felt Dostoevsky's Notes from the Underground and the Bible. For those afraid of spoilers, you were better off avoiding this review altogether. For if, persons unknown, credit Zamyatin with writing th ...more
Now, why would I think that an old SF novel from 1924 might not be as polished and extravagant in exploring ideas and crafting a truly delicious dystopia as, say, 1984, or Anthem, or Brave New World as they did many years later? Or be as timely now as it was in the time where it was heralded as a "malicious slander on socialism"?

Did I avoid this mainly because I couldn't pronounce the author's name?


But that's horrible! Especially when this little gem is polished to a very high degree.

It la
Manuel Antão
Aug 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

Russian Big Brother: "We" by Yevgeny Zamyatin

“Nineteen Eighty-Four” and “We”: both have constant surveillance of the individual, though through different means. Both have the protagonist discovering a class in society that is free, but powerless. Both have state control over passion, albeit in rather different ways. But “1984” (the new title) is rather turgid though. “We” by contrast is actually a lot of fun, I rather prefer it of the
I became interested in this novel after I learned that Orwell read it before starting work on “1984”. Having now read “We”, I might re-read Orwell’s masterpiece.

The edition I read had a translator’s note, which explained that Zamyatin used certain sounds in language to convey certain concepts, and that this plays a significant role in the original. That seems to me to pose more than the usual issues for a translator. In addition, Zamyatin’s future society, called in this version “The One State”,
2020 update:
With apologies to the people who found it funny, I find my old review’s reveling in my high school snobbery more embarrassing than funny now (especially since this review is popular). I’m cutting the review down to the parts actually about the book.

That said, my trouble with the dystopian/utopian genre continues—in my opinion, the format lends itself to strawmen and the plots get samey. But, to show I’m not completely biased, a couple dystopian/utopian recommendations: The Dispossess
We: A classic warning against political tyranny from Russia that remains relevant today
(Also posted at Fantasy Literature)
Yevgeny Zamyatin’s We (1924) is widely recognized as a direct influence on George Orwell when he composed his dystopian masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four, and there are certainly strong signs of influence in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World as well. Zamyatin edited Russian translations of works of Jack London and H.G. Wells, and We can be viewed as a reaction against the optimi
In the futuristic world imagined by Zamiatine in 1920, D-503, inventor of the Intégrale 'spaceship, is ill. He has developed a soul, tells it with humility and sincerity.

And good God it's beautiful! Beautiful as a lover can write it, yet here torn between the temptations of I, a rebellious woman and the laws of her perfect Euclidean world, of the Taylorist world where the best way to prevent a man from committing a crime is to deprive him of freedom.

We feel overwhelmed with compassion, tendernes
Lee  (the Book Butcher)
The first of the great Three granddaddies of dystopian fiction. The other two being Orwell's 1984 and Huxley's A brave new world. Having read the other two first they seem to be in answer to Zamyatin philosophical proposition. Hard for me not to judge this against 1984 which is one of my favorite books of all time. Which is not good for We.

one thousand year into the future and the human race has changed a lot. humans have colonized the solar system, erased the induvial, made life subsiding food
Amy Sturgis
This is the "granddaddy" of the modern dystopian novel, the book that influenced Huxley's Brave New World, Rand's Anthem, and Orwell's 1984: Yevgeny Zamyatin's We (1924). I've read it repeatedly and taught it, as well, and I always discover something new in the novel each time I turn to it. It's a brilliantly chilling depiction of a futuristic totalitarian regime that organizes its people's lives with almost scientific precision, as seen through the troubled eyes of one of its leading citizens. ...more
Jacob Overmark
Brace yourself and take notes.

In a not so distant future you may be reduced to a number, a cipher that is.

May the beauty of the perfect algorithm shine upon you, reflecting in thousand mirrors, ingeniously providing the adequate amount of light and darkness, enabling you to rest when time is and be awake when needed for the nation.

You don´t even have to think, WE have found the key to eternal happiness. All the choices our forefathers had to endure, WE have taken from your shoulders that burden.
This review was written in 2003 for another website. I read the Clarence Brown Penguin edition of the book. I remember almost nothing about the book today, like the fact that the book takes place on a spaceship.

My alphabetical reading list is done. Yevgeny Zamyatin’s dystopian novel We takes up the tail end of my journey through the alphabet. This dismal piece of writing (and I’m not talking about the dystopian setting) is a perfect end for the self-imposed restrictions on my reading choices. Th
Apr 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An overlooked classic.

Written decades before 1984, Brave New World and Fahrenheit 451, Yevgeny Zamyatin's We is arguably the founding text of the dystopian genre. Not necessarily the first, but the one on whose shoulders they all climbed.

Today, this book is obscure and forgotten by comparison to the three mentioned above, but it still deserves to be read for its novel treatment of the themes of individual freedom and totalitarian control.

I have read and heard many incredible things about those t
Jenny (Reading Envy)
Read again to discuss on SFF Audio; will link to podcast when it is posted.

This book has not been on my radar for long, but when something is considered to be "the best single work of science fiction yet written" (Ursula K. Le Guin) and the precursor of 1984 and Brave New World, not to mention the majority of current science fiction (Bruce Sterling introduction), I knew I couldn't put it off.

An interesting historical note - it was published in England (1921) long before it was published in Russi
Jon Nakapalau
One of the most original works of dystopian fiction ever...a template for works that are much more famous.
Rakhi Dalal
Sep 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dystopia
We have witnessed Totalitarianism prevail in different countries of the World. We have studied its origins, pondered upon its dominion and contemplated the consequences with respect to its bearing on the human civilization and its future. That it still exists, casting a portentous shadow over the lot of people pruned off their rights as humans, divested not only of their freedom to live but also to think, is a travesty that discredits the human advancement. That the beast is still tamed to unlea ...more
Allison Hurd
Sep 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Phenomenal. I read this because I was interested to see what could inspire both the vastly different takes on dystopia--both the carrot and stick versions. I was expecting it to be like reading Dracula or Lud-in-the-Mist, which are both charming and influential, but are distinctly timebound.

Not at all here.

This is exceptional in its envisioning of a future that seems so current. A hundred years ago, this guy had free love (well, free love free of freedom), rockets (indeed the MC is the head engi
Oct 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dystopia
3.5 stars
This is an early dystopian novel from the early 1920s and Zamyatin was Russian. We has inspired many other writers including Orwell, Vonnegut, Nabakov, Le Guin, possibly Huxley (he disputed this) amongst others. However Zamyatin in turn was influenced by H G Wells and especially by When the Sleeper Wakes. The novel takes place hundreds of years into the future in a society called One State. The citizens are known by numbers and the protagonist is D-503. He is the chief engineer building
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Goodreads România: * || Literatura rusă || Noi 4 42 Apr 16, 2021 09:44AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Quote correction 4 16 Apr 02, 2021 05:56AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Add cover and change publisher 4 18 Jan 20, 2021 05:21AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Change page count 2 85 Jan 04, 2021 06:26AM  
SciFi and Fantasy...: "We" by Yevgeny Zamyatin (BR) 26 55 Oct 19, 2020 02:49PM  
Reading 1001: We by Yevgeny Zamyatin 3 19 Jul 20, 2020 05:32PM  

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Yevgeny Zamyatin (Russian: Евгений Замятин, sometimes also seen spelled Eugene Zamiatin) Russian novelist, playwright, short story writer, and essayist, whose famous anti-utopia (1924, We) prefigured Aldous Huxley's Brave New World (1932), and inspired George Orwell's 1984 (1949). The book was considered a "malicious slander on socialism" in the Soviet Union, and it was not until 1988 when Zamyati ...more

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