The Simulacra

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Dick, Philip K. The Simulacra. New York City: Ace, 1964. New York CityL Vintage, 2002. See Internet Speculative Fiction Database for other reprints, translations, reviews.

Totalitarian dictatorship behind a figurehead, simulacrum president.

Discussed by Kiyoko Magome's in "The Player Piano and Musico-Cybernetic Science Fiction between the 1950s and the 1980s: Kurt Vonnegut and Philip K. Dick," who relates the novel to Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (hence also to BLADE RUNNER). Magome quotes the opening with a "psycho-kineticist" musician playing piano (brilliantly) "without manually approaching the keyboard" (Simulacra p. 3 of Vintage reprint). Magome concludes that "the implied image of player pianos in The Simulacra is more obscure than that in We Can Build You but still effectively emphasizes the musico-cybernetic characteristics of the futuristic world" in this novel (p. 382).

RDE, Title, 9Aug19; finishing 15Feb22