Edward Bellamy"Looking Backward" Analysis

Edward Bellamy’s looking backward is a utopian novel written in the late 19th century that tells that story of Julian West a young aristocrat living in 1887 that is put into a deep sleep and awakens in 2000 to a perfect socialist society. It was written as Bellamy’s attempt to express his thoughts on how society should run. Coming from the midst of a time where there was a dramatic separation between the wealthy and the poor, especially in the Massachusetts area he lived in. It was surprisingly well accepted considering the underlying socialist views and is known as one of the most politically influential books of the 19th century.   Although the book has faults, the utopian political ideas are clear in the setting; however, as with most utopian literature the realistic nature of politically implementing such a thing is not present.
Looking Backward fits easily into the classification of a utopian novel. The book which is written from the point of view of Julian West, who was part of an aristocratic family in 1887. He and other members of his societal level were aware of the social gap between the rich and the poor but did little to correct it believing that there really was nothing that could be done about it.     His social class believed that they were in fact better than those of the lower social standings.   Julian began by talking about what life was like for him and his fiancée, Edith Berlath, whose marriage was delayed due to strikes among the workers building their home.   Julian, who suffers from insomnia, has a built an underground sleeping chamber to shield him from the noise of the city and occasionally uses a mesmerizer, Dr. Pillsbury, to put him to sleep. On the night of May 20th 1887 he informs his servant Sawyer to awaken him in the morning from his slumber with a special method taught to him by Dr. Pillsbury. That evening Julian’s home and everything and everyone in it is destroyed by a fire.   There is no one left who knows about his secret...

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