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User Rating: 2 / 5

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Tichy finds himself plumped into one of the conceptual futures that he and his colleagues are congressed to predict, inside a rebel-besieged Hilton. Well written and ingeniously translated, Congress yet has the feel of high-spirited finger-exercises: lots of ideas thrown off, a host of satirical targets, thin plotting. Like Dick, Vonnegut, and Barth, the book is one of those "fearless satires" of modern academic-government bureaucracies that SF course instructors will find more comfortable as assigned texts than some of Lem's scientifically demanding fiction.

Technically, Congress makes use of verbal techniques from Queneau and from Clockwork orange (the book). Its plot projects into a conceptual future which is the mental universe of the postwar linguistic school in philosophy, possibly fused with the conceptual world of the nouveau roman.

For ambitious SF collections, purchase should be automatic.

Choice - a publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries (A division of the American Library Association)