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    Goodreads did not give this book very many stars. I have to agree. Wikipedia provides a sparse page on Tarde, about whom they say was "a French sociologist, criminologist and social psychologist who conceived sociology as based on small psychological interactions among individuals (much as if it were chemistry), the fundamental forces being imitation and innovation." He lived from 1843 to 1904.
    From a psychological standpoint, he fits right in with where we are now. Again, Wikipedia says, "Among the concepts that Tarde initiated were the group mind (taken up and developed by Gustave Le Bon, and sometimes advanced to explain so-called herd behaviour or crowd psychology), and economic psychology, where he anticipated a number of modern developments." Those terms sound pretty familiar, eh? Group mind refers to what we often call "collective consciousness,"—what many of us are now attempting to alter. Herd behavior is a term that's become even more popular lately.
    It appears, at least from what I can surmise, that this is Tarde's only "novel" if that indeed is what it is. This is one of Tarde's few works translated into English, originally written in 1896 as Fragment d'histoire future, and published as Underground Man, translated by Cloudesley Brereton in 1905. Wikipedia refers to it as a science-fiction novel, which, I guess would apply to all or most of these Dover Doomsday Classics, of which this is the sixth out of thirteen that I've read so far. They all deal with some catastrophic situation that has occurred on earth, either in a specified area, such as Japan Sinks, or the whole planet, and the survivors are often living in a dystopia, in which some form of "normalcy" for human society is being worked out. Gosh, that sounds awfully familiar, too. You may read all of my Dover Doomsday Classic reviews on my Futuristic, Apocalyptic, Time Travel Index Page.
    Anyways, this one is a bit more permanent. The sun has burned out and the earth has gone cold. Really cold, and it's not a book to read under the attack of these present climate engineers and their ice nucleation agenda. And so one smart human—Miltiades—comes to the rescue, and leads the survivors underground, where they build a new society. But, unlike a novel, there is only an unnamed narrator, and other than the brief mention of the above person and his girlfriend, there are not other characters, as such. It is more an exposé on Tarde's sociological belief system. Wikipedia, by the way, refers to the situation as another ice age, which is erroneous. It is a situation of a permanently dead sun.
    I'm not a big fan of utopian novels because most of them seem absolutely horrid to me. This one was even worse. But there is a great deal of humor here, too. Really dark and satirical humor that makes one laugh out loud. However, as the book progresses, there is a shift from humorous to Tarde's theories on humanity, and its ability to adjust and thrive in whatever environment it finds itself. We here on Planet Earth in 2021, are soon to experience that ourselves, even more than we are now, which has been a gradual shift into an Orwellian dystopia, but controlled by a bunch of psychopathic elites. This, too, shall pass, and we will VERY SOON find ourselves, perhaps free of them, but with an even more immense challenge before us.
    Reading this book was not always a pleasant experience. Had it not been for the humor, it might have been painful. And as for the humor, apparently, when Brereton translated it, he was worried that readers of the English language wouldn't "get it," so he had H.G. Wells write a Preface, explaining that the book is funny. With Wells, too, one is not always quite sure either. He compares French language humor to English language humor thus:

There are certain things peculiar, I suppose, to every language in the world, certain distinctive possibilities in each. To French far more than to English, belong the intellectual liveliness, the cheerful, ironical note, the professorial playfulness of this present work. English is a less nimble, more various and moodier tongue, not only in the sound and form of its sentences but in its forms of thought. It clots and coagulates, it proliferates and darkens, one jests in it with difficulty and great danger to a sober reputation, and one attempts in vain to figure Professor Giddings and Mr Benjamin Kidd, Doctor Beattie Crozier and Mr Wordsworth Donisthorpe glittering out into any so cheerful an exploit as this before us.

    I dunno about that. I'm a huge fan of British humor, and I think English is just fine for funniness. Anyways, Wells continues with a commentary about the book and Tarde's solution to a problem that Wells points out, in reality, all people would just simply die and that would be it. Anyhow . . . . The good readers at Goodreads are a bit less forgiving. One reader, Leticia, called it "racist," and I not only agree, but think it sounds a bit like modern eugenics—the breeding of a superior race. Some readers were even less tolerant. David wrote, "Read the blurb, then skip it and go read H.G. Wells." But perhaps the best review was by Christopher, which itself abounds in satire!

I wasn't going to bother with a review for this but it was so bizarre I just couldn't help it.

An absurdly silly yet still entertaining post-apocalyptic tale that chronicles man's shedding of his restrictive evil nature and the realization of his perfection through the evolution of group cooperation and herd behavior. When the sun suddenly dies, the remaining populations on earth are forced to move their societies underground. Like Noah and his ark full of animals and plants, they take with them their most valuable items for rebuilding their new world also: paintings, bronzes, violins, and books of poetry. After a few centuries of subterranean slaughter, somehow the inevitable victors emerge: secular saintly aesthetes who create a romantic neo-troglodytical artistic utopia through the prodigious use of prophylactics and capital punishment. And love.

Lots and lots of charming love.

    Haha!! And those who did not use prophylactics were punished by being either dropped into a lake of petroleum or removed from the underground back to the surface through a volcano, where they froze instantly. There were piles of lovers out there. Is this still the humorous part? The populations must be strictly controlled, you see, because the frozen dead animals that covered the earth, which made up their only food source, would obviously be depleted at some point. And I must add here that, yes, I suppose this book would be considered "sci-fi," however, there was no attempt whatsoever to develop either technology or any means of food production. In that respect, the book is truly a sociological experiment.
    And by the way, this is one of the seven out of thirteen Dover Doomsday Classics that is available from Project Gutenberg. I do not own the book pictured above. Here is a bit about the story. Tarde begins with a short Introductory paragraph. Here's the first sentence:

It was towards the end of the twentieth century of the prehistoric era, formerly called the Christian, that took place, as is well known, the unexpected catastrophe with which the present epoch began, that fortunate disaster which compelled the overflowing flood of civilisation to disappear for the benefit of mankind.

    The satire sets right in. The first section is entitled "Prosperity." After 150 years of war, universal peace is finally achieved, with the establishment of the great Asiatic-American-European confederacy. (New World Order?) Then we move into eugenics. Hey, there's something familiar again, eh?

For about a hundred years the military selection committees had broken with the blind routine of the past and made it a practice to pick out carefully the strongest and best made among the young men, in order to exempt them from the burden of military service which had become purely mechanical, and to send to the depot all the weaklings who were good enough to fulfill the sorely diminished functions of the soldier and even of the non-commissioned officer. That was really a piece of intelligent selection; and the historian cannot conscientiously refuse gratefully to praise this innovation, thanks to which the incomparable beauty of the human race today has been gradually developed.

    Disease has been nearly wiped out, except for short-sightedness, due to the proliferation of journalism. Greek is now the universal language, after the breakup of the British Empire and recapture of Constantinople by the Græco-Russian Empire. "Here and there a few isolated villages in the hollows of the mountains still persisted, in spite of the protests of their schoolmasters, to mangle the old dialect formerly called French, German, or Italian, but the sound of this gibberish in the towns would have raised a hearty laugh." Barbarous names like Shakespeare, Goethe, and Hugo, were nearly forgotten, "whose rugged verses are deciphered with such difficulty by our scholars." But the works of Homer, Sophocles and Euripides came back to life.
    And as for the arts, "Music in general fell to the secondary position to which it really belongs in the hierarchy of the fine arts," but poetry regained its foremost legitimate rank. Hmm. And people had a great deal of leisure to read, because labor had been replaced by inventions. Water and winds were now the "slaves of man." Those who chose to work spent barely three hours a day in the factories. Everyone was wealthy, so there were few quarrels. "In default of ugliness, also, love was scarcely an object of either appreciation or jealousy, owing to the abundance of pretty women and handsome men who were as common as blackberries and not difficult to please, in appearance at least." Therefore, the only area left for human desire was political power.
    And it is here that Tarde really provides some acerbic satire. After the excesses of one certain leader, who bankrupted the State, he was replaced by a philosophical financier. Soon after, people began to notice that the ladies of honor were quite ugly, the court colors a dull grey—everything became very common.

Alike in his legislative proposals, as in his appointments, the choice of the prince was always the following: the most useful and the best among the most unattractive. An insufferable sameness of colour, a depressing monotony, a sickening insipidity were the distinctive note of all the acts of the government. People laughed, grew excited, waxed indignant, and got used to it. The result was that at the end of a certain time it was impossible to meet an office-seeker or a politician, that is to say, an artist or literary man, out of his element and in search of the beautiful in an alien sphere, who did not turn his back on the pursuit of a government appointment in order to return to rhyming, sculpture and painting. And from that moment the following aphorism has won general acceptance, that the superiority of the politician is only mediocrity raised to its highest power.

    HAHA! And look who's the American President now!! And this quote is even more appropriate! "The best government is that which holds to being so perfectly humdrum, regular, neuter, and even emasculated, that no one can henceforth get up any enthusiasm either for or against it."
    This reminded me of one of my Walmart checkout line conversations, very common since the lines are usually long and slow. The woman with whom I was speaking pointed out the exact same thing concerning colors now. Cars are all the same dull colors, and I've noticed for a long time that clothing is, too. (NOT MINE.) But my CAR is white. Just pay attention to how many white cars there are. She knew, and so do I, that none of this is without purpose. Think about it . . . .
    And that ends the era of prosperity. Then comes "The Catastrophe." And I have to say, this part was very uncomfortable, given the situation we are dealing with here on earth now. The sun is not dying, but its usefulness is being purposefully killed off. So, we may not be destroying the sun, but those who have decided to play god are destroying the relationship between it and our planet. I found the descriptions of the cold intensely upsetting, keeping in mind the recent engineered disaster in Texas and the even worse one in Vorkuta, Siberia. This section begins:

On several occasions already the sun had given evident signs of weakness. From year to year his spots increased in size and number, and his heat sensibly diminished. People were lost in conjecture. Was his fuel giving out? Had he just traversed in his journey through space an exceptionally cold region?

    Ha! I certainly hope that last sentence was meant to be funny and that people didn't actually believe that in Tarde's time!! Anyways, there were "a few unorthodox persons of heretical and pessimistic temperament" who were aware that astronomers of the past noted that stars, did, in fact, burn out. But it was the winter of 2489 that really began to worry people. Spring finally came, but the sun was no longer golden, it was red. "The meadows were no longer green, the sky was no longer blue, the Chinese were no longer yellow, all had suddenly changed colour as in a transformation scene." (Note my comment about racism above.) And in the next few years, the sun continued to change from one color to another, going through the whole rainbow spectrum. But here is where it gets scary, also as mentioned above.

At the same time disaster succeeded disaster. The entire population of Norway, Northern Russia, and Siberia perished, frozen to death in a single night; the temperate zone was decimated, and what was left of its inhabitants fled before the enormous drifts of snow and ice, and emigrated by hundreds of millions towards the tropics, crowding into the panting trains, several of which, overtaken by tornadoes of snow, disappeared for ever.

    Yikes! Even "snownadoes," as many people on earth now have recently experienced, all the more reason to STOP the people who are messing with our climate, 'cause we are heading for a likewise catastrophe. I won't even quote any more from this chapter because it is all too horrible and real, but let it suffice to say that most life on earth perished, the seas froze, and a hero seaman named Miltiades, whose ship froze in the Atlantic, compelled him, along with his companions, to walk back to land. He enters the state shelter, consisting of walls ten feet thick with a huge furnace and the remainder of the planet's human population. It is he who creates the plan for their survival, which is to excavate into the bowels of the earth where there is natural heat from the planet itself. Since there are no other alternatives, the people agree on this one. And so we come to the "Saved" section.
    OK, so here's where it gets really goofy. Rather than salvaging any plants, seeds or food production resources, they rescue all the great works of art of the world. They build great libraries to house the books. Art and creativity thrives. They live on the frozen dead animals still in the surface of the earth. (Yuk, I cannot even imagine . . . .) But no mention is ever made as to how they will survive when that source eventually runs out. Thus, the quote above from Goodreads, about population control. They have electricity and tools, but no one seems to think it important to find a way to make clothing, so they mostly go naked, but, you know, they are all so beautiful. Hmm. Well. Even though literature and poetry thrive, they have no paper, so they write on slates or pillars. I guess this is still supposed to be the humorous part, but it gradually becomes intensely philosophical.
    Let it suffice to say that if this was intended to be a "utopia," (which is was), I would have rather frozen to death. Just the thought of living with no other creatures but humans is enough to say no thanks. I want my own little planet, where I can spend the rest of eternity with plants and animals and the hell with people. So there.
    Apparently, the purpose of the book was to explore the immense capacity human beings have for adjusting to adverse conditions, and surviving creatively. That is good in one respect, but it also, certainly here in 2021, numbs people to the truth of what is really going on in the present. People have adjusted to all these Covid restrictions, just as the controllers planned. It's been as easy as pie to herd the sheeple into the slaughterhouse.
    This certainly was not one of my favorite books, but it made me think about things in a new way, and that is always good—to stretch one's imagination. Therefore, I will leave it up to you if you want to read it, and not make a recommendation either way. As I am reading the whole set of Dover Doomsday Classics, not reading it wasn't an option. It is free as an eBook, and isn't very long. But it isn't an easy read, either.
    Below, "A room inside an abandoned building in a village near the coal-mining town of Vorkuta." Article linked above.

Vorkuta, Siberia

    Unlike the story, however, this was not caused by anything natural, but by a patented process called chemical ice nucleation, an act of Weather Warfare, carried out by the Russian government. Just like the recent catastrophe in Texas was caused by the U.S. government. To learn more about it, and why governments all over the world need to stop messing with the earth's life support systems, please go to If it is not stopped immediately, we all face a future even more dreadful than the people in this story.
     Chemically Nucleated Winter Weather
    Below is one of Dane's photos from near Kerrville, Texas.

Kerrville, Texas

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