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on 14 December 2017
The translator of the We (Momentum Classic Science Fiction) Kindle edition isn't mentioned. After some detective work, using information at the back of the eBook, I found that "Momentum Classic Science Fiction" is part of Pan Macmillan Australia. The book is a reprint of the Dutton, 1924 First Edition. The manuscript was smuggled to the firm of E. P. Dutton, who arranged for a translation by Kiev-born Gregory Zilboorg, a medical student at Columbia University who had already published an English version of a novel by Leonid Andreyev. The original was written in Russian, in Russia, in 1921, but not published there until 1988. WE has the distinction of being the first work to be banned by the Soviet censorship board.

Note there are questions surrounding the authenticity of Zilboorg's Russian source. It was the 1929 French edition Nous Autres that Orwell drew on for 1984.

Zilboorg later authored several works on the history of psychology, and treated a number of celebrities, including George Gershwin and Lillian Hellman; the musical LADY IN THE DARK is based on Moss Hart's experience undergoing analysis with Zilboorg.

The difficulties people are having with the book may be due to it drawing on expressionist aesthetic theory and Jungian psychology, rather than the translation. But I'll leave those who have read other translations to comment on that, and on the authenticity question. This document is certainly of note given that it is the first English translation of the first banned work to escape to the West.
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on 9 June 2017
Great.
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on 22 August 2017
Easy to read given a complex topic which is the base for many current books and films of recent and current period
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on 7 September 2017
Reading this you can see were Orwell got all his inspiration for 1984. You feel absolute pity for the narrator knowing throughout he is being manipulated by those around I'm to reach their political means
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on 29 March 2017
Awesome, thank you! On time and in perfect condition! :)
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on 3 June 2017
We by Yevgney Zamyatin is famous as founding the genre of dystopian science fiction. Written in Russia between 1919 and 1921, the novel imagines a future society based on surveillance and control. Glass-walled apartments allow the state to keep an eye on everyone at all times.

I thought parts of the novel were wonderful. The best bits for me were the descriptions of an obsessive love affair, between the book’s protagonist - a highly-strung space ship engineer known as D503- and a rebellious young woman, known as I-330, who drinks, smokes and talks revolution. D503’s love affair causes him to challenge assumptions that the state is all knowing and all good. He starts to feel like an individual. At the same time, he wants to lose his newfound identity in the beguiling eyes of his feisty girlfriend.

“Like a crystal I was dissolving in her, in I-330.”

The book is not simply a portrayal of an oppressive controlling state. This is a nuanced study of relationships, both personal and social. It has no clear messages to suit propagandists of any kind. D-503 likes maths, and realises that just as there is no final number in mathematics, so in life there is no final revolution. Life keeps going, with doubt and uncertainty keeping the wheels turning:

“Man is like a novel: up to the last page one does not know what the end will be. It would not be worth reading otherwise.”

I also liked Zamyatin's quirky humour, not what you might expect from the father of dystopian sci-fi. The manuscript of We is part of the story. As D-503 writes, he describes various misadventures that affect his growing pile of paper. At one point, I-330 leaves her stockings lying on page 124 of the open manuscript. As well as making me chuckle, this also made the point that books really are just a pile of paper. No book, no philosophy, is the final word in wisdom. We is about discovering that such wisdom does not exist.

Unlike Ursula le Guin, I wouldn’t say this is the perfect science fiction novel. The plot is creaky in places, with sudden jumps that sometimes left me bewildered – particularly towards the end. Considering all that D-503 gets up to, the secret police seem rather absent, which was part of an occasional mismatch between actions and consequences.

Overall, however, this is a historic book, up there with the works of Jules Verne and H.G. Wells as one of the foundations of science fiction.
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on 21 March 2015
Dystopian masterpi\
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on 23 September 2017
We is a strong contender for my favourite book of all time. It's vision of a dystopian future is as vivid as 1984 or Brave New World, but it's also written in a beautiful poetry. Some critics have read it as a schizophrenic's downfall into psychosis, some have read it as a criticism of academia, some of the Soviet state or modern life in general. There's also a huge emotional depth to it, and the awkward, outsider-ness of the protagonist feels very contemporary today. It's a book that rewards re-reading and an effort to interpret, but at the same time it's also pretty easy and quick reading. I recommend this book to pretty much everyone I talk about books with and it's probably my most frequently loaned book. I've read that the rights to the movie have been being passed around Hollywood for a few decades, I for one hope that movie never gets made, as nothing could do justice to this incredible text.
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on 14 March 2017
We is really an amazing book. It is said to be the inspiration for 1984 and I can believe it. The story follows a similar arc of a government employee in a highly ordered society who falls in love with a mischievous woman and is torn apart by his emotions until he eventually submits to the state. Set in a future communist utopia on the verge of revolution, the visual descriptions remind me alot of JG Ballard. A must read if you are interested in dystopian fiction.
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on 5 November 2016
Maybe it's because I've read dystopia fiction before this book or that I've read better.
And that's how I felt; I've read better.
I believe this books narrative was a little confusing with his tangents and the pages and pages of mathematical conversation bored me.
And that's why I didn't enjoy reading it. It bored me. It doesn't have the same feel as 1984 by George Orwell and that's obviously due to creative differences or perhaps how 'We' was translated, making it difficult to get in to. But I've read many other translated Russian literature and I'm afraid this classic book's voice and plot pace just didn't appeal to me.
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