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We: A Novel (1920)

by Yevgeny Zamyatin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
7,374199978 (3.85)1 / 456
Set in the twenty-sixth century A.D., Yevgeny Zamyatin's masterpiece describes life under the regimented totalitarian society of OneState, ruled over by the all-powerful "Benefactor." Recognized as the inspiration for George Orwell's 1984, We is the archetype of the modern dystopia, or anti-Utopia: a great prose poem detailing the fate that might befall us all if we surrender our individual selves to some collective dream of technology and fail in the vigilance that is the price of freedom. Clarence Brown's brilliant translation is based on the corrected text of the novel, first published in Russia in 1988 after more than sixty years' suppression.… (more)
  1. 260
    Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (tehran)
    tehran: Brave New World was largely inspired by Zamyatin's We.
  2. 271
    Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell (soylentgreen23, roby72, timoroso, MEStaton, 2810michael)
    timoroso: Zamyatin's "We" was not just a precursor of "Nineteen Eighty-Four" but the work Orwell took as a model for his own book.
  3. 60
    Red Star: The First Bolshevik Utopia by Alexander Bogdanov (leigonj)
    leigonj: As We (1920) is anti-communist Russian science fiction, Red Star (1908) is pro-communist Russian science fiction. They are equally superb.
  4. 30
    Aelita by Alexei Tolstoy (DuneSherban)
    DuneSherban: While thematically distinct from We, Aelita shares its problematic view of early Soviet society, and can also be read as a discourse on totalitarian society, revolution and Bolshevism (published originally in 1923).
  5. 30
    Lord of the World by Robert Hugh Benson (hippietrail)
    hippietrail: an even earlier dystopia novel from 1908
  6. 30
    This Perfect Day by Ira Levin (myshelves, VictoriaPL)
    myshelves: Dystopian novel.
  7. 00
    The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov (sturlington)
  8. 00
    Kallocain by Karin Boye (Oct326, catherinedarley)
  9. 00
    Day of the Oprichnik by Vladimir Sorokin (2810michael)
  10. 213
    Anthem by Ayn Rand (myshelves)
    myshelves: Dystopian novel. Wikipedia says: "Ayn Rand's Anthem (1938) has several major similarities to We, although it is stylistically and thematically different."
Walls (3)
1920s (14)
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» See also 456 mentions

English (188)  Spanish (2)  German (1)  Hungarian (1)  Dutch (1)  French (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Danish (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (197)
Showing 1-5 of 188 (next | show all)
Non metto in dubbio che sia una pietra miliare della fantascienza, un precursore illuminato della distopia, una perla preziosa della letteratura d'inizio secolo e della letteratura esteuropea... ma... io sono più stupido di questo libro.
Il linguaggio l'ho trovato cosi ostico, cosi difficile da seguire che sembrava di correre a piedi nudi su dei vetri rotti.
La storia sicuramente era innovativa e originale all'epoca e leggerla oggi è come immergersi nel passato, questo si, ma ad oggi, all'occhio di oggi, risulta talmente banale, prolissa e senza senso da risultare, perdonatemi, noiosa.
Di sicuro è il luogo metaforico da cui hanno attinto tutti gli scrittori successivi, non è difficile immaginarlo o capire da dove hanno attinto.
Però davvero è troppo difficile, per me, il linguaggio con cui è stato scritto.
Ci ho messo una vita ad arrivarci in fondo, a cercare di capire come procedesse la storia. ( )
  louchobi | May 12, 2022 |
I never heard of it before. Reading it felt like what I imagine reading Neuromancer must be like to a cyberpunk fan who's read 100s of modern cyberpunk novels. ( )
  Paul_S | May 11, 2022 |
This is the dystopian novel that inspired Brave New World, Animal Farm, and 1984. This is a book about communism run rampart, where everything is dictated by numbers, even names of people.

The world of the One State is ingeniously written, instead of Human Instinct being suppressed, it re-directs its citizens to hate those that the state hates, love what the state loves. It even manages to have poetry that is about the perfection of math. As a result, strong attachment towards others is to be a sickness.

The story is written through a diary/journal type. Each day, entry. The Builder (D-503, everyone is a number in this world) of the ship Integral, whose mission is to travel to alien planets and convert those they find to the perfectness that is the One State, is targeted by I-330. She does this slowly, igniting human passions that are unknown by the builder.

The book was written in 1920 - but feels modern. Women and men do different work, D-503 is disgusted with his neighbor who has "negroid" lips. But, for the most part, the society is equal - in that full transparency (both figuratively and literally). I'd have like to know more about the top of this world-is there an actual builder at the top, but we know what the Builder knows, and he, and his fellow citizens, are kept in the dark about how decisions are made. ( )
  TheDivineOomba | Apr 28, 2022 |
Interesting story! Alas, the prose is disorienting; thus, I cannot award the fifth star. ( )
  djlinick | Jan 15, 2022 |
Classic dystopian fiction. I can see parts of so many different dystopian books and films in this, however it still manages to stand out of the crowd.
The book this reminds me most of is actually War of the Worlds, as like that book the story is done from a street level perspective. Our protagonist isn't at the centre of events and so we only get glimpses of the full picture.
Most police-state dystopias have some sort of love story in them to serve as a symbol of rebellion however this is more direct. Its not so much the individual verses the system, so much as the individuals penis verses the system :lol, as that seems to be the part making all the decisions.
I'm quite surprised this even got published in 1920 given how highly charged the sex scenes are, i'm not saying they're graphic but the impression they leave is quite something :) .
I'm very close to giving this 5 stars but i do think its losing a little something in translation, still really good though and a very unique angle for this type of fiction. ( )
1 vote wreade1872 | Nov 28, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 188 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (70 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Yevgeny Zamyatinprimary authorall editionscalculated
Aplin, HughTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brown, ClarenceTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Chesterman, AdrianCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Chwast, SeymourCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Drohla, GiselaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
香男里, 川端Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ginsburg, MirraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Glenny, MichaelIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Guerney, Bernard GuilbertTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Le Guin, Ursula K.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lo Gatto, EttoreTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lodge, KirstenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mills, RussellCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Randall, NatashaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reschke, ThomasÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Russell, KitIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Self, WillIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Siegel, HaroldCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sillitoe, AlanForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sterling, BruceForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zilboorg, GregoryTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
I am merely copying out here, word for word, what was printed today in the State Gazette: In 120 days from now the building of the INTEGRAL will be finished.
Quotations
The effect of that woman on me was as unpleasant as a displaced irrational number that has accidentally crept into an equation.
There is no final revolution.  Revolutions are infinite.
I do not want anyone to want for me--I want to want for myself.
I shall attempt nothing more than to note down what I see, what I think - or, to be more exact, what we think (that's right: we, and let this WE be the title of these records). But this, surely, will be a derivative of our life, of the mathematically perfect life of OneState, and if that is so, then won't this be, of its own accord, whatever I may wish, an epic?
A human being is like a novel: until the last page you don't know how it will end. Or it wouldn't be worth reading...."
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Set in the twenty-sixth century A.D., Yevgeny Zamyatin's masterpiece describes life under the regimented totalitarian society of OneState, ruled over by the all-powerful "Benefactor." Recognized as the inspiration for George Orwell's 1984, We is the archetype of the modern dystopia, or anti-Utopia: a great prose poem detailing the fate that might befall us all if we surrender our individual selves to some collective dream of technology and fail in the vigilance that is the price of freedom. Clarence Brown's brilliant translation is based on the corrected text of the novel, first published in Russia in 1988 after more than sixty years' suppression.

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Book description
Em suas páginas, o autor imaginou um governo totalitário chamado Estado Único que, supostamente pelo bem da sociedade, privou a população de direitos fundamentais como o livre-arbítrio, a individualidade, a imaginação, a liberdade de expressão e o direito à própria vida. Um mundo completamente mecanizado e lógico, onde as pessoas não possuem nomes, mas sim números, e o Estado dita os horários de trabalho, de lazer, de refeições e até de sexo.
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