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Looking Backward | [Edward Bellamy]

Looking Backward

The hero is anyone who has ever longed for escape to a better life. The time is tomorrow. The place is a Utopian America. This is the backdrop for Edward Bellamy's prophetic novel about a young Boston gentleman who is mysteriously transported from the nineteenth to the twenty-first century, from a world of war and want to a world of peace and plenty.
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Publisher's Summary

The hero is anyone who has ever longed for escape to a better life. The time is tomorrow. The place is a Utopian America. This is the backdrop for Edward Bellamy's prophetic novel about a young Boston gentleman who is mysteriously transported from the nineteenth to the twenty-first century, from a world of war and want to a world of peace and plenty. Translated into more than twenty languages, and the most widely read novel of its time, Looking Backward is more than a brilliant visionary's view of the future. It is a blueprint of the "perfect society," a guidebook that stimulated some of the prominent thinkers of our age. John Dewey, Charles Beard, and Edward Weeks, in separate surveys conducted in 1935, listed Edward Bellamy's novel as the most influential work written by an American in the preceding fifty years.

(P)2000 Blackstone Audiobooks

What Members Say

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  •  
    Mark Nelson 04-23-12
    Mark Nelson 04-23-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "What would a world without money be like?"
    What made the experience of listening to Looking Backward the most enjoyable?

    We've all heard that (the love of) money is the root of all evil, but we can't imagine a world without it. This is exactly what the author does. He describes a world of the future where people act to benefit everyone, rather than having everyone do whatever it takes to get ahead. This is a story I'll listen to many times, because it describes the kind of future that I would like to be part of.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven OPELIKA, AL, United States 10-27-11
    Steven OPELIKA, AL, United States 10-27-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    7
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    "A good presentation of a great classic"

    Looking Backwards is a classic of the late 19th and early 20th centuries which contains some of the early ideas of what would become the socialist movement. It is a Utopian novel in which a man form the 18th century is transported to the 21st. I think it is a fascinating picture into the 18th century mindset of what a perfect culture society could be.
    To me this is not a book about what 'should' be, but instead it is about what 'could have been.'
    The narration is crisp, if a bit fast passed, though to me this fits.
    Overall I liked this version of the book and I would recommend it to anyone looking for an interesting glimpse into a possible version of our world today as dreamed up by a 18th century author.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    04-26-04
    04-26-04 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This Book is socialist Propaganda"

    No one should be allowed to read this book without first or directly after reading or listening to Atlas Shrugged. Atlas Shrugged will give you a opposing view to the "perfect world" portrayed in "Looking Backward" The victorian language in this book is also difficult to follow and requires concentration to stay with the story.

    8 of 26 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael G. Fuller Jr. Auburn, Al United States 11-29-11
    Michael G. Fuller Jr. Auburn, Al United States 11-29-11 Listener Since 2008

    slashandburn

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    "Utopian dreams"

    Just want to say, the narration is decent, the story is well told, but it's evil.

    Some of the social aspects are not really questioned deeply enough, as in "how they are sustainable", like how many new citizens are required to be mustered in each year to handle all the surviving mustered out. At some point there are going to be large populations of citizens being paid not to work, basically social security, and everyone know how well funded that is. And how would they create new jobs to handle all these new citizens, at some point we would have people building "ghost cities", just to have a job, rubber rooms, or factories producing nothing.

    And its also funny how the writer created a way that they could still have "writers" in the future, since that's their job. No one has a self interest, but if you squander your time after your job and work hard, for "yourself", you can write a book, have the government print it for a small fee, and if your really lucky, enough people will buy your book, to fund your work "quota", so you can stop working and just write books.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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