Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbott

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a must-read book. Written in really simple language, that even a school student can understand, this book has two distinct parts - each conveying a different idea.

The first part, under the guise of introducing the Reader to Flatland, is a brilliant satire on Victorian society. Retrospectively, one can supplant several obnoxious historical concepts to Flatland society - Nazi's Aryan supremacy & eugenics, India's rigid caste system, slavery etc. The obnoxious traits of Flatland society are narrated amiably by the narrator, a 'Square'.

The second part sees our two-dimensional narrator encountering a Sphere - a celestial body from a three-dimensional world, Spaceland. The Square also peek into lesser worlds - a one-dimensional 'Lineland' and a zero-dimensional 'Pointland'. Through these encounters, the Square postulates the presence of infinite dimensions. This part is remarkable! Keep in mind that this book was written way before Einstein's theory on time being a 4th dimension.

The second part also cautions humans against complacency - for the point, it was the Universe ; for the Monarch of Lineland, the Line was the Universe ; for the Square, Flatland was the Universe ; for the Sphere, SpaceLand was the Universe ... Who knows what the Universe really is?

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My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a must-read book. Written in really simple language, that even a school student can understand, this book has two distinct parts - each conveying a different idea.

The first part, under the guise of introducing the Reader to Flatland, is a brilliant satire on Victorian society. Retrospectively, one can supplant several obnoxious historical concepts to Flatland society - Nazi's Aryan supremacy & eugenics, India's rigid caste system, slavery etc. The obnoxious traits of Flatland society are narrated amiably by the narrator, a 'Square'.

The second part sees our two-dimensional narrator encountering a Sphere - a celestial body from a three-dimensional world, Spaceland. The Square also peek into lesser worlds - a one-dimensional 'Lineland' and a zero-dimensional 'Pointland'. Through these encounters, the Square postulates the presence of infinite dimensions. This part is remarkable! Keep in mind that this book was written way before Einstein's theory on time being a 4th dimension.

The second part also cautions humans against complacency - for the point, it was the Universe ; for the Monarch of Lineland, the Line was the Universe ; for the Square, Flatland was the Universe ; for the Sphere, SpaceLand was the Universe ... Who knows what the Universe really is?

View all my reviews