Saturday, April 30, 2016

Edward Bellamy and Socialist Science Fiction - 25 Books to Download

25 Books to Download, Books scanned from the Originals into PDF format

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Looking Backward: 2000-1887 is a utopian Socialist science fiction novel by Edward Bellamy, that was first published in 1888. According to Erich Fromm, Looking Backward is "one of the most remarkable books ever published in America".

In 1897 Bellamy wrote a sequel, _Equality_, dealing with women's rights, education and many other issues. Bellamy wrote the sequel to elaborate and clarify many of the ideas merely touched upon in _Looking Backward_.

The success of Looking Backward provoked a spate of sequels, parodies, satires, and skeptical dystopian responses. The result was a "battle of the books" that lasted through the rest of the 19th century and into the 20th. The back-and-forth nature of the debate is illustrated by the subtitle of Geissler's 1891 Looking Beyond, which is "A Sequel to 'Looking Backward' by Edward Bellamy and an Answer to 'Looking Forward' by Richard Michaelis".
William Morris's 1890 utopia News from Nowhere was partly written in reaction to Bellamy's utopia, which Morris did not find congenial.

Contents of download:

Equality by Edward Bellamy 1908 [Equality is a utopian sequel to Looking Backward. The book contains a minimal amount of plot; Bellamy primarily used Equality to expand on the theories he first explored in Looking Backward.]

Looking further Forward - An Answer to "Looking Backward" by Edward Bellamy (1890), by Richard C. Michaelis [Julian West discovers that utopia is on the verge of collapse. A series of dialogues with a janitor (who used to be a professor but was fired when he criticized the state) discuss how controlled capitalism is superior to socialism. A bloody massacre erupts when a jilted lover of Edith Leete (West's beloved in Looking Backward) leads a violent revolution.]

Looking Beyond (1891), by Ludwig A. Geissler [In this tale, the violent revolution presented at the end of Richard Michaelis's book becomes Julian West's nightmare, and so never happened. West learns that the janitor he has been talking to is wrong on all points, and a debate between a supporter and a skeptic of the future society ends with Bellamy's utopia triumphant. Also, Earth establishes communication with Mars.]

Looking Further Backward (1890), by Arthur Dudley Vinton [China invades Bellamy's utopian America. As the utopian United States has abolished the military, only Julian West understands war and what is at stake — however, no one will listen to him as they are unable to think for themselves because the future system has abolished individuality.]

Speaking of Ellen (1889), by Linn Boyd Porter (Albert Ross) [Excerpt: But where is our great mother, the State she cried, throwing back her head with a superb motion. "The State, which claims our allegiance, which seizes our substance for its revenues, which drafts our brothers into its armies, which punishes our treason even with death! Every child that is born adds to its strength and glory! We who make the State, how long shall we appeal to it in vain!"]

Mr. East's Experiences in Mr. Bellamy's World: Records of the Years 2001 and 2002 by Conrad Wilbrandt 1891 [Mr. Ost, a German, reads Looking Backward and decides to try being mesmerised. He awakens in the future society of Looking Backward, only to discover it is full of shoddy goods, poor wages, and sexual favoritism.]

Looking Within: The Misleading Tendencies of "Looking Backward" Made Manifest (1893), by J. W. Roberts [The narrator, James North, acquires a potion that allows him and his beloved to sleep in suspended animation for several years. They first awaken in 1927 to discover the United States in open class warfare. They sleep again and awaken in 2000 and meet Julian West, Dr. Leete and other denizens of Bellamy's utopia. They discover rampant favoritism and a society on the brink of collapse. Sleeping again, they awaken in 2025 to find that society has returned to capitalism to survive.]

Young West: A Sequel to Edward Bellamy's Celebrated Novel "Looking Backward" (1894), by Solomon Schindler [describes the adventures of Julian West's son, who (after discovering a way to make sewage useful) becomes president of the future utopia.]

Looking Forward (1906), by Harry W. Hillman [describes a revolution in electricity that will help bring about Bellamy's world.]

News From Nowhere by William Morris 1890 [William Guest, falls asleep after returning from a meeting of the Socialist League and awakes to find himself in a future society based on common ownership and democratic control of the means of production. In this society there is no private property, no big cities, no authority, no monetary system, no divorce, no courts, no prisons, and no class systems. This agrarian society functions simply because the people find pleasure in nature, and therefore they find pleasure in their work.]

Inequality and Progress by George Harris 1897 [Before social and political theories are constructed, primal truths concerning the constitution, inheritance, and differentiation of men should be recognized.]

My Afterdream: a sequel to the late Mr. Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward by Julian West 1900 ["Those who have read the late Edward Bellamy's book Looking Backward will find the sequel to it, My Afterdream* singularly entertaining. Julian West is made to tell how practical Socialism proved ludicrously defective in some important details. In the simple process of eating one's dinner, or the necessary, if sombre, ordeal of being buried, we find Socialism a most cumbersome and, in fact, farcical institution. The story may be regarded as a reduetio ad absurdum of Bellamy's work. It ends appropriately in a lunatic asylum!" The Westminster Review 1900]

Freeland, a Social Anticipation by T Hertzka 1890 [460 people travel to Africa to create a Socialist utopia]

Dr. Leete’s Letter to Julian West 1890

Plus You Get:

The White Stone by Anatole France 1910 (Originally published in 1905, The White Stone was, in part, a rebuttal to the racist "yellow peril" fever of the time - a book about "white peril" and the rise of socialism.)

The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Gilman 1894 (Gilman was a feminist and socialist)

Moving the Mountain by Charlotte Gilman 1911

The Angel of the Revolution by George Griffith 1895 (A lurid mix of Jules Verne's futuristic air warfare fantasies, the utopian visions of News from Nowhere and the future war invasion literature of Chesney and his imitators with a Socialist message)

Eugene Sue—The Wandering Jew, Volume 1, 1845

Eugene Sue—The Wandering Jew, Volume 2, 1845

Eugene Sue—The Wandering Jew, Volume 3, 1845
(the hero is a dispossessed laborer and the author is a radical socialist)

The Happy Prince and Other Stories by Oscar Wilde 1907 (Libertarian socialist writer Oscar Wilde employs Happy Prince character in order to challenge Victorian humanitarian enterprises in his children’s book The Happy Prince and Other Tales.)

Utopia by Thomas More 1902 (Perhaps the first utopian socialist was Thomas More (1478-1535), who wrote about an imaginary socialist society in his book Utopia)

The New Atlantis by Francis Bacon 1909 (Lord Bacon's social philosophy was embodied in this publication. It followed somewhat the lines of Utopia. It was built upon a humane philosophy, and constructed a state based upon kindness and compassion towards the distressed)

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A Critique of Edward Bellamy's LOOKING BACKWARD by C.A.F. Lindorme 1890

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1 comment:

  1. Article in The Literary World 1889

    That Mr. Edward Bellamy had something to say when he wrote Looking Backward we cannot doubt, for he has said a good deal in it, and has, in fact, overweighted his story with the abundance of description of the "nationalized" order of things prevailing in the year 2000 A. D). But to some readers of the book it is very plain that Mr. Bellamy does not know what he pretends to expound, and we think that his recent frank exposition of the way in which he came to write the novel (in the Nationalist for May) will serve to increase the number of these unbelievers. His first notion was of a simple "fairy tale of social felicity," it seems, and one feature of this tale was a grand parade of an industrial "army." Following nothing more substantial than the military metaphor, he "stumbled over the destined corner-stone of the new social order," and recast the whole romance under the one ruling conception of future industry organized on the model of the great armies of Europe. A curious light is thus shed by Mr. Bellamy himself upon his notions of the needful preparation for writing philanthropic fiction. We are nevertheless somewhat surprised that a writer who recasts a fairy tale, in obedience to a metaphor, into a description of a new order of society, should yet expect that new order to become "an exceedingly old story" by the year 2000 A. D. We can recall few instances of prophecy less grounded in painstaking investigation of the present facts of the industrial order, and dispassionate study of the last century of social evolution. A large section of human nature, and precisely that section in which most human activities originate — its self-regarding instincts, which are just as much an integral part of man as his social propensities — will be well-nigh completely subdued, we are assured, in a hundred years! Socialism will be all in all; individualism will have no place of respect or honor. Looking Backward is a book wrought out by a practiced master of literary effect, and with its generous intentions we all sympathize, but its success must be counted by Mrs. Oliphant as one of the exceptions to her rule that the novelist should know what he pretends to expound. A romance of the future cannot be exempted from the need of a solid basis in knowledge of the existing order. Because Mr. Bellamy's book does not comply with this condition of solid literary performance, we are forced to believe that its place is not for many years, and that the man of the year 2000 A. D. will consider its wide sale one of the curiously interesting but transitory phenomena of the last quarter of the nineteenth century. If we are not much mistaken, it is in this way that philanthropic fiction should not be written in order to help in real and lasting reform.