In EM Forster’s novella The Machine Stops shopping is a thing of the past. The citizenry live in luxurious little cells and have everything they want – food, entertainment, medicine – delivered to them via tubes. They are physically weak and strong-looking babies are put to death. The people communicate via iPad type devices and rarely leave their rooms. When they do leave, they summon airships that arrive at their door in the manner of an Uber. They have thousands of online friends and spend their time attending or delivering lectures. The story was written in 1909 and is an astonishingly prescient vision of the present day.In Huxley’s Brave New World, from 1932, books have been banned in the manner of Plato’s Republic. No one is allowed to read Shakespeare, as it might make them question their lot. Freedom has been sacrificed for comfort, and the inhabitants are made very comfortable indeed: they have nonstop sex and when things get rough they bliss out on the drug Soma, which seems to augur both Prozac and ecstasy. The great achievement of the authorities, says Huxley, is to have created a situation where the people love their slavery.
Donnerstag, 25. März 2021
» The Machine Stops«
Ist es so weit?
Ich fürchte: ja, es ist — wenn die Bürger nicht endlich dagegen aufbegehren ... in letzter Minute!