HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Do androids dream of electric sheep? by…
Loading...

Do androids dream of electric sheep? (original 1968; edition 1997)

by Philip K. Dick

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
12,376323201 (3.96)2 / 576
Member:AlanPoulter
Title:Do androids dream of electric sheep?
Authors:Philip K. Dick
Info:London : HarperCollins 1997, c1968.
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:science fiction

Work details

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick (1968)

1960s (239)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (306)  French (5)  Spanish (4)  Italian (2)  Polish (1)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  Romanian (1)  Portuguese (1)  All (322)
Showing 1-5 of 306 (next | show all)
He thought, too, about his need for a real animal; within him an actual hatred once more manifested itself toward his electric sheep, which he had to tend, had to care about as if it lived.

I'm still reading this book. I've read it before but it's been at least 10 years if not more.

I don't know why this time around the animals and Deckards drive and need for a real animal is hitting close to home for me. I can't imagine living without animals. Earlier this week I walked over to the Hub on campus to grab lunch. This little sparrow was having the time of his life in a rain puddle. He was not afraid of me walking up to him and he wasn't afraid of the students walking about. He just happily fluffed his wings, gave himself a rather thorough bath, and enjoyed himself. To me it was such a wonderful thing to watch. I love animals. I love watching them and attaching personalities to them. As I watched the bird, a guy walked past me and smiled saying, "it's a bird!" as if I didn't know. I just smiled back and continued watching until the bird had finished up and hopped away.

It's understandable that Deckard needs to have something real in his life - everything is so automated - you buy a box so you can feel empathy, you dial a number so you can feel something else. But I also think there is a joy in having real animals to watch, to love, to care for. The book doesn't really go into domestic animals so much - Deckard says that his electric sheep doesn't know that he, Deckard, exists. When I get home from work I'm greeted (most days) by at least one of my cats. If I had an electric cat or dog, would I receive that same kind of greeting?

I used to think Sony's robot dog was really amazing, but it's still electric. It can learn and it can respond, but it's not going to greet me at the door with licks and tail wagging.

That's heartbreaking. To live where there is no real feeling anymore. No real emotion or love. I think the only real feelings the people in this book have is fear.

May 23rd - I don't remember feeling this worn out and depressed the first time I read this book. The book is so bleak. The ideas expressed within are unsettling - that we would create robots to be human-like and then give them the drudgery work. If we're going to create robots to do the dirty work for humans, why make them human-like at all? Why not leave them to be just machines without free will and thought process?

It's never really explained why the Rosen corporation felt they needed to make the andys better and better and more human like. We know the androids were created to go to Mars and build the colonies, but beyond that, that's pretty much it.

Why did the andys get imbedded with ways to kill people? If they're just diggers, why not only give them digging thoughts? Why create humanoid beings at all?

In these novels, and movies like this, where the robots suddenly rebel it's always because the humans have decided to give the robots some free will and the ability to think and grow for themselves, to learn from it's experience. Hello! That's where the trouble comes into play! Duh! We're the humans. They're the machines. It's okay for them to not be human like.

Other things that bothered me in the story was how the society is now segregated into people who were "normal" and people who were "special" (as in having to take the Special Bus to school kind of special). Only the normal people were allowed to live off world. Earth is in ruins and the people who aren't considered smart enough or mentally sane enough are not allowed to leave. What were the parameters? Who decided who was special and who wasn't? I've heard that in England a person's medical history is public access. WOW! That's insanely scary and leading right down this road to the government making a decision about who gets to have what based on their mental capacities.

The future looks bleak, if you follow Mr. Dick's writings. Very, very bleak indeed. ( )
  wendithegray | May 1, 2017 |
This was a read that started well with some intriguing world-building, but fell flat for me in terms of characters and narrative.

I like a central question of what it means to be human, and I like empathy as an answer. So it’s unfortunate that this book is devoted to deconstructing it. I’m not a huge fan of books that relentlessly point out that humanity is horrid (the real world does this awfully well all by itself).

Deckard’s huge realisation that the line between androids and humans is not as clear-cut as he has always believed is a big personal journey for him, but given it’s clear from the start that his position is pretty flawed, it was underwhelming for me as a reader (he is an asshat from start to finish).

It’s often surreal, with deliberate dialogue and mannered descriptions; it was easier to engage with intellectually as satire than to relax into as storytelling. I remain fascinated if disheartened by the bleak vision of a society so disconnected from its own emotions that it artificially induces not only moods but religious experiences. There’s enough here that I’ll consider reading other novels by Philip K Dick, although I don’t hold out much hope for finding one I like unreservedly.

Full review ( )
  imyril | Apr 15, 2017 |
Wow, Philip Dick is always a trip to read and this was no exception. I love it.

Original title was Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. ( )
  yrthegood1staken | Feb 28, 2017 |
Prob the best PKD book I ever read, though it is barely recognizable as such. Must be some heavy duty editing going on w this one. 1982 edition ICW Blade Runner movie release. Clearly an original version of the novel.
Androids are glaringly lacking in real world intelligence here. Roy Batty depicted as a drug taking Mongoloid, and he got whacked by Deckard in about 2 seconds. Much better than the movie, though the movie is awesome in it's own right. ( )
  delta351 | Feb 2, 2017 |
A science fiction classic, in which a bounty hunter in future San Francisco (the date isn't clear but it's sometime after "World War Terminus" has left a radioactive cloud over the planet and blocking out the sun; most humans have chosen to emigrate to Mars or another space colony to survive) has to track down and "retire" some lifelike androids that have escaped from the Mars colony and returned to Earth.

It was never exactly clear to me why the androids (who don't seem to be out to overthrow humans and who have built-in lifespans of only a few years) had to be killed, other than that they committed crimes in order to escape Mars, but that didn't interfere with my enjoyment of the story. In addition to the basic action-driven plotline, there are some interesting ethical, religious and philosophical questions posed about what makes us human, and why it's acceptable to kill androids even if they are so nearly human that only the most exacting psychological-type tests can detect their machinery.

One of the most poignant aspects has to do with the scarcity of real animals due to the radioactive fallout, which makes each specimen (even toads and spiders) worth thousands of dollars and the main status symbol for humans, who have to resort to lifelike electric animals if they can't afford the real thing. I've never seen the Harrison Ford movie The Blade Runner, which is apparently based on this story, but I'd kind of like to check it out now and compare it to the Dick story. ( )
  rosalita | Jan 26, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 306 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (60 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dick, Philip K.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brick, ScottNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dougoud, JacquelineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duranti, RiccardoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giancola, DonatoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Goodfellow, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Michniewicz, SueCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sleight, GrahamIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Struzen, DrewCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wölfl, NorbertTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zelazny, RogerIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
And still I dream he treads the lawn,
walking ghostly in the dew,
pierced by my glad singing through.
~ Yeats
Dedication
To Tim and Serena Powers, my dearest friends
To Maren Augusta Bergrud
August 10, 1923 - June 14, 1967
First words
A merry little surge of electricity piped by automatic alarm from the mood organ beside his bed awakened Rick Deckard.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
It was January 2021, and Rick Deckard had a license to kill.

Somewhere among the hordes of humans out there, lurked several rogue androids. Deckard's assignment--find them and then... "retire" them.

Trouble was, the androids all looked and acted exactly like humans, and they didn't want to be found!
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345404475, Paperback)

"The most consistently brilliant science fiction writer in the world."
--John Brunner

THE INSPIRATION FOR BLADERUNNER. . .

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was published in 1968. Grim and foreboding, even today it is a masterpiece ahead of its time.

By 2021, the World War had killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn't afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacrae: horses, birds, cats, sheep. . . They even built humans.

Emigrées to Mars received androids so sophisticated it was impossible to tell them from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government banned them from Earth. But when androids didn't want to be identified, they just blended in.

Rick Deckard was an officially sanctioned bounty hunter whose job was to find rogue androids, and to retire them. But cornered, androids tended to fight back, with deadly results.

"[Dick] sees all the sparkling and terrifying possibilities. . . that other authors shy away from."
--Paul Williams, Rolling Stone

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:14 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

THE INSPIRATION FOR BLADERUNNER. . . Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was published in 1968. Grim and foreboding, even today it is a masterpiece ahead of its time. By 2021, the World War had killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn't afford one, companies built incredibly realistic simulacrae: horses, birds, cats, sheep. . . They even built humans. Emigrees to Mars received androids so sophisticated it was impossible to tell them from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government banned them from Earth. But when androids didn't want to be identified, they just blended in. Rick Deckard was an officially sanctioned bounty hunter whose job was to find rogue androids, and to retire them. But cornered, androids tended to fight back, with deadly results.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 11 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
26 avail.
526 wanted
2 pay2 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.96)
0.5 1
1 27
1.5 9
2 139
2.5 38
3 700
3.5 224
4 1529
4.5 181
5 1026

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 114,373,827 books! | Top bar: Always visible