First published in 1897, "The Year 3000" is the most daring and original work of fiction by the prominent Italian anthropologist Paolo Mantegazza. A futuristic utopian novel, the book follows two young lovers who, as they travel from Rome to the capital of the United Planetary States to celebrate their "mating union," encounter the marvels of cultural and scientific advances along the way. Intriguing in itself, "The Year 3000" is also remarkable for both its vision of the future (predicting an astonishing array of phenomena from airplanes, artificial intelligence, CAT scans, and credit cards to controversies surrounding divorce, abortion, and euthanasia) and the window it opens on fin de siecle Europe. Published here for the first time in English, this richly annotated edition features an invaluable introductory essay that interprets the intertextual and intercultural connections within and beyond Mantegazza's work. For its critical contribution to early science fiction and for its insights into the hopes, fears, and clash of values in the Western world of both Mantegazza's time and our own, this book belongs among the visionary giants of speculative literature.
"Two welcome surprises await readers of this book: the first is simply that a nineteenth-century masterpiece of utopian literature has been made available to them in a translation that reads like an original, and the second, that a great scholar has written a user-friendly, highly sophisticated, and passionate introduction shedding light on the times of neo-positivism, its antecedents, and its legacy." Luigi Ballerini, professor of Italian, University of California at Los Angeles "With extraordinary critical sensitivity and depth, apparent on every page of her masterful introduction, Nicoletta Pireddu has cast Mantegazza as a visionary bent on reshaping the art of living for the future. The translation preserves intact the astonishing modernity of the original." Giuseppe Mazzotta, Sterling Professor in the Humanities for Italian, Yale University