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O Mundo Resplandecente

3.11  ·  Rating details ·  1,588 ratings  ·  228 reviews
A Plutão Livros volta à proposta de publicar obras desconhecidas pelo público com a primeira edição brasileira de um clássico fundacional da ficção científica.

Nessa história de 1666, a autora explora um mundo alegórico e satírico acessado por um portal mágico no Polo Norte. Diante de seres bizarros que ainda não entendem o verdadeiro significado de ciência e filosofia, Mar
ebook, 180 pages
Published June 19th 2019 by Plutão Livros (first published 1666)
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Mar 10, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
As sci-fi/fantasy this is way ahead of its time. A young woman is carried away by a suitor, but their vessel is driven off course toward the North Pole. At the pole one can access a parallel world (our pole meets their pole there, and the sun of the other world becomes visible) where bears, foxes, and geese have evolved to becomes dominant species with civilizations and advanced technology. Unlike humans, they get along fine, although there is still war in the Blazing World, an archipelagic city ...more
Heather Jones
Sep 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of various works touted as “the first science fiction novel” (especially in contexts where people are pointing out the strong influence of female authors in the early development of science fictional concepts). The full title is The Description of a New World, Called The Blazing-World, first published in 1666, but with an expanded version (as discussed below) published in 1668.

In brief: a young woman is abducted by a would-be suitor but the ship carrying them is blown off course to t
Eric Anderson
Mar 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ever since I read Danielle Dutton’s novel “Margaret the First” which fictionalizes the life of Margaret Cavendish and Siri Hustvedt’s extraordinary novel about a misunderstood female artist “The Blazing World”, I’ve had a fascination with this pioneering writer of the 17th century and wanted to read her books. Earlier this year I attended a feminist book club meeting about Dutton’s novel and that reignited my interest in Cavendish. In the lead up to the announcement of this year’s longlist annou ...more
Richard Abbott
I first heard about Margaret Cavendish’s The Blazing World through a friend on Google+ and was intrigued. A female science fiction writer from the time of the Plague and the Great Fire of London? Since the kindle version is so extraordinarily cheap I had to follow this through, and am very glad that I did.

First though, let me say that not all readers will enjoy this book (as is obvious from other reviews!). It is, naturally enough, written in an older form of English in which many words do not h
Oct 04, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A bizarre trip of a Lady gone Empress of a new world, called the blazing world, to which she got via hopping from pole to pole (don’t ask).

An­i­mal-crea­tures of this new world, like bear-men, spi­der-­men, worm-men &c, demonstrate con­sid­er­able patience in answering the new-born empress’s questions of which she has a great many. At this time, I wasn’t even quite sure, if this was meant to be satirical or not.

Stylis­ti­cally it’s a fiasco, if you ask me. There’s indirect speech galore in the s
Here's the thing about Restoration era literature--it's steeped in contemporary references. I took a Restoration literature class in undergrad, and found most of the material boring and quite difficult to get through. It required a lot of research just to understand conversations and plot.

I had forgotten about this when I picked up The Blazing World, instead expecting something a little more exciting. The first science fiction written by a woman? A feminist Utopian? Sign me up!

That's not quite w
I hardly know how to rate this, it is certainly not an enjoyable read, very boring in parts, and not written very well, but then, it's remarkable in its way, the work of an obviously remarkable woman of the 1660s.
Mar 24, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this as the first of a trio of books. Her most well known fiction to get me started, followed up by a biography and yet to be concluded with some historical fiction of her life. Margaret Cavendish was a fascinating woman and as a prominent female of the time, we know quite a lot about her life and still have her work to read today. Yet, until recently I'd never heard of her.

This story is bizarre, sometimes boring, but equally blazing. Before reading, I suggest a little research about her
E. G.
Mar 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Introduction & Notes
Note on this Edition
Works by Margaret Cavendish
Further Reading

From Nature's Pictures (1656)
--'The Contract'
--'Assaulted and Pursued Chastity'

--The Description of a New World, Called The Blazing World (1666)

Thanks to a GR friend pointing me to Margaret Cavendish, where I would have completely missed reading this wonderful mix of romance and a kind of a wackiness leaning to the bizarre. Written in the mid-1600s, right off Margaret Cavendish’s feisty and wild imagination came through. This Penguin edition has three works, the first two are romances, I found both to be page turners with their heroines trying to balance what is expected from them with the life they wish to lead. Both heroines are indep ...more
Jennifer (Insert Lit Pun)
What a strange book, befitting the reputation of its author – the 17th-century English duchess Margaret Cavendish, one of the first women authors to consistently publish under her own name. These three tales (The Contract, Assaulted and Pursued Chastity, and The Blazing World) are filled with ideas about the power of virtue, the fluidity of gender, the wonder and perplexity of scientific theories, and the importance of speaking your own truth (whether it’s fashionable or not). Although Cavendish ...more
Jun 19, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
More like 2.5 stars.

This is a fascinating read, but only for those that are really interested in the origins of science fiction and early women writers. Margaret Cavendish is a very early English writer that wrote this when it was not acceptable for women to write and publish books. I am not sure of a lot of the backstory behind this, but I'm hoping to be able to gleam some of that in the new book Margaret the First, which explores her life in a biographical historical fiction story. I picked t
A weird bit of philosophy and proto-sci-fi. Ignores the rules of any conventional story, features parallel worlds, astral-projection, submarines made of gold and many sorts of animal men including Lice-men. Best approached as a piece of philosophy rather than sci-fi but quite interesting.
May 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review was originally published at:

I’m going to consider each story separately and then the collection as a whole because I think each story deserves attention rather than just the title story.

The Contract (1656)

The Contract is 40 pages long in this edition and it deals with love, duty, and the law. A very young girl in the care of her uncle is married to an older man her at the request of his father who is about to die. She continues to live with he
Aug 18, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Before reading this, I truly thought there were no utopias in fiction because they all turn into dystopias somehow. I also thought nobody would write a utopia because how the heck do you write a world where all is perfect, and make it interesting?

Well look, Cavendish wrote one! Unsurprisingly it is downright boring.

Of course this is from a 21st century perspective; it's an achievement for a female of her age to be writing, there are all those new scientific thoughts coming out, blah blah, but fr
Jenny (Reading Envy)
I chose this on Serial Reader in an attempt to read more classics but I had to abandon it. If this is where science fiction started, thank goodness it changed and grew. It's an adventure/SciFi/fantasy story where literally nothing happens, they just sit around and talk about how they understand the universe. And of course the visitor to the species is welcomed and made the empress, so no conflict anywhere.
This is a very unusual book in that it is a very early science fiction/fantasy novel written by an usual woman, Margeret the Duchess of Newcastle. It is an amalgam of discussions, action, description of the world and all its creatures in a unique way.
I would rate it 2 and a half stars, since there is a lot of interesting description but it has a feeble plot.
Aug 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm doing the first half of the Brit Lit survey this year, which gave me the excuse to finally make the time to read this. Oh man. It is totally bonkers and absolutely awesome. Like, what if you and your BFF could unite your souls in one body and run the world??
Looking forward to teaching it.
Laura Lam
This was fairly bonkers, but an interesting look into proto-science fiction with some heavy lashings of philosophical musings. Feminist for the seventeenth century, but a fair amount of casual colonialism. Is it a utopia? Also had the author self-insert as a Mary Sue, and then it was surprisingly queer.
Dec 17, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature
Ok, so a lady is kidnapped by horny merchants, shipwrecked, rescued by "bear-men" from another dimension, escorted to said dimension, MADE EMPRESS of said dimension, receives instruction in metaphysics from a procession of "fly-men," "worm-men," giants, etc., and goes on to have a multi-dimensional 3-way (platonic) love-fest with the author (!) and her husband, culminating in an fiery orgy of violence and yet another piece of evidence (along with Quixote) that everything 'postmodern' was already ...more
Shanlon Gilbert
Mar 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Margaret Cavendish lived a radical life. She blended genres to come up with one of the earliest works of utopian science fiction. While thoroughly early-modern in its tone, a thinly-veiled structure in which to present her ideas on natural philosophy and sass those whom she thought stupid, The Blazing World provides an empowering narrative for Early Modern women. In particular the second half (in reality about a quarter or less of the text) is exciting and action-packed.

Margaret deserves more r
Feb 03, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Margaret Cavendish, the Duchess of Newcastle was an English aristocrat from the seventeenth century and also a very prolific writer... a bit too prolific considering her gender and her time. People of her time regarded her as a failed writer with an interesting life. Margaret Cavendish was known for being quite an eccentric with an extravagant wardrobe (apparently, she often dressed her maids and servants to match her outfits... and I'm called vain when my socks match my earings! She totally roc ...more
I was interested in reading Margaret Cavendish's The Blazing World (1666) as an early example of feminist science fiction — a precursor to Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1818) — and an oft-cited example of early utopian, speculative and interstitial fiction.

Editor Kate Lilley calls The Blazing World, "...a narrative of the liberty of the female soul and the emancipatory possibilities of utopian speculation and writing specifically for women."

It starts off with an intriguing story. A woman who is
Tove Selenius
Oct 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was going to review this book in my pretentious, scholarly persona, I had even started thinking up dry little witticisms about the state of the 17th century natural philosophy that Margaret Cavendish so thoughtfully spends two thirds of this volume to describe. But then came the second part of The Blazing World. And my inner nerd/feminist(Hi!) went wild.

So, we have Margaret Cavendish. Mad Maggie sometimes called by her contemporaries, who were not thrilled about the idea of a women writing...
Roman Clodia
Jun 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Margaret Cavendish was an eccentric and nothing shows that more clearly than her Utopian fantasy A Blazing World. Drawing self-consciously on More and other male writers, she creates what has been called a 'feminist' Utopia, although I'm not sure in what this consists other than the fact that its written by a woman.

Full of strange hybrid men-animals (including the talking worm men) this showcases the breadth of Cavendish's reading (science, astronomy, medicine, philosophy) but muddles it all up
Celia T
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: written-by-women
Parallel universes! Submarines! Trips to the theatre! Worm-men! Lesbian subtext?
Alex Sarll
Sometimes quoted as the beginning of science fiction, which it really isn't – even Cavendish's own introduction notes that she was preceded by Cyrano de Bergerac's States And Empires Of The Moon, though you could certainly make a case for 1666 as the beginning of Anglophone SF (and how apt that it should coincide with an apocalyptic blaze in the capital). But retrofitting anything of such a vintage into modern genres is always tricky, and to me this reads more like part of a long tradition which ...more
Jan Priddy
I do not like giving this book a rating. I did not actually "like" it, though I found it interesting. The first romance in this volume was amusing, I had no patience for the second, and the utopian vision of The Blazing World was about using fiction to discuss and play out the values and position of Cavendish. Not a particularly nice person. (Neither the Empress nor Cavendish.)

I grew tired of objects made of precious gems, blazing diamonds, flaming metals, and so forth. It was all too much.

Jul 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical-sf
Ahem: "Written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent PRINCESSE, THE Duchess of Newcastle."

It is about a lady who becomes the all-powerful Empress of a parallel world connected to earth via the North Pole. It is a strange and great thing to exist in the world. I could go on about how it is a really excellent way to understand European conceptions of gender, power, colonialism, and otherness in the mid-17th century, but instead:

"The rest of the Inhabitants of that World, were men of seve
Nicholas Whyte
May 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, 2014, unread, 1406[return][return]For all the primacy of Frankenstein, I reckon this must be one of the earliest known sf books by a woman, at least in English. The Duchess of Newcastle was a well-known eccentric of Restoration England - Samuel Pepys has several awestruck entries in his diary about simply wanting to look at her in astonishment, including her visit to the Royal Society - and wrote various pieces including this exploration of politics, science, religion and ...more
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Margaret Lucas Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, was the youngest child of a wealthy Essex family. At the age of 20 she became Maid of Honour to Queen Henrietta Maria and traveled with her into Persian exile in 1644. There she married William Cavendish, Marquis (later Duke) of Newcastle.

Between 1653 and 1668 she published many books on a wide variety of subjects, including many stories that are no

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