We

I’m reading ‘We’ by ….well, I think it’s Zamyatin, or something like that.  Russian, from around 1921 or so.  It’s influence on Orwell is obvious, he makes a big deal out of the 24 hour clock, and 1984 opens with ‘The clock struck 13…’  I’m not sure it was the very first sentence, but near.  And of course the setting was the same: a heavily regulated, totally conformist, nightmare society.
I also felt it might have influenced Huxley’s Brave New World (the heroes of both were described as having exceptionally hairy  hands, IIRC), but Huxley said he’d never heard of it at the time he wrote BNW.
Orwell admitted that it was an influence.  I suspect it was somehow on Huxley, too, with the zeitgeist, the spirits of  ideas floating on the mid 20th century air.
It’s good sometimes to look at the present from the past, when we were supposed to be the future.  It’s instructional.  One-state is like the singularity, and they’re talking about sending an ark up into  space, so those are still themes of science fiction, but they talk about the Venutians and Uranians, so it’s a reminder that in 1921 we still didn’t have a clear idea what was out there, had no idea of the atmospheres, surfaces  and temperatures on other planets.  We also had no knowledge of exoplanets, or distant galaxies.
We are expanding, we are not contracting.  The future is brighter than it  is dark.

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