Classics Club Spin #24: The Number Is…

The drawing has been done!

Your Lucky Spin Number is 18

Number 18 on my list for this Spin is Looking Backward by Edward Bellamy.

It is the year 2000-and full employment, material abundance and social harmony can be found everywhere. This is the America to which Julian West, a young Bostonian, awakens after more than a century of sleep. West’s initial sense of wonder, his gradual acceptance of the new order and a new love, and Bellamy’s wonderful prophetic inventions – electric lighting, shopping malls, credit cards, electronic broadcasting – ensured the mass popularity of this 1888 novel. But however rich in fantasy and romance, Looking Backward is a passionate attack on the social ills of nineteenth-century industrialism and a plea for social reform and moral renewal.

I may have read this book in college, when it was still the 1990s, but the year 2000 was coming up fast. I took a class on Utopian Literature, and I’m pretty sure this was on the syllabus. We read some interesting work for that class, and I wish I still had the reading list, but since there’ve been 25 years and a 2,000-mile move between then and now, it’s not surprising that I don’t have it anymore.

If we did read it, I don’t think I remember anything about it. It’s always possible, though, that one of the “I know I read that somewhere” fragments in my brain will be found inside.

This is a much shorter book than my last lucky spin selection, so I might even make it by the end of September.

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