WE by Yevgeny Zamyatin (Heathen Edition)


Spine #53
Yevgeny Zamyatin
Gregory Zilboorg
First Edition
Heathen Edition
Heathen Genera
Arriving Soon-ish, Rebellion 101
Paperback ISBN
Hardcover ISBN
I feel my cheeks are burning as I write this. To integrate the colossal, universal equation! To unbend the wild curve, to straighten it out to a tangent—to a straight line! For the United State is a straight line, a great, divine, precise, wise line, the wisest of lines! I, D-503, the builder of the Integral, I am only one of the many mathematicians of the United State. My pen, which is accustomed to figures, is unable to express the march and rhythm of consonance; therefore I shall try to record only the things I see, the things I think, or to be more exact, the things we think. Yes, we; that is exactly what I mean, and WE shall, therefore, be the title of my records. But this will only be a derivative of our life—of our mathematical, perfect life in the United State. If this be so, will not this derivative be a poem in itself, despite my limitations? It will. I believe, I know it.

Yevgeny Ivanovich Zamyatin (1884–1937) was a Russian author of science fiction, philosophy, literary criticism, and political satire, now considered one of the first Soviet dissidents due to his use of literature to both satirize and criticize the Soviet Union’s enforced conformity and increasing totalitarianism, as especially found in his highly influential and widely imitated dystopian science fiction novel WE. Set in the 26th century, in a time when individual freedom does not exist and uniformed humans have no names, only assigned numbers, a mathematician, D-503, begins a journal while overseeing the construction of the spaceship Integral for the United State – a sprawling, urban city-state governed strictly by scientific logic and reason, and constructed almost entirely of glass buildings perpetually monitored by a secret police force known as the Bureau of Guardians. However, when D-503 meets the rule-defying I-330, he abruptly discovers through a blooming irrational love that he possesses something that may destroy him: an individual soul.

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"A literary landmark, led the way to Brave New World and 1984."
Saturday Review