View Full Version : Flatland

11th January 2011, 13:40
I bet most Avalonians are familiar with Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions. It is a short satirical work about a two-dimensional world and the polygons that inhabit that world. It was written in 1884, but is relevant to our current situation.

Flatland society is hierarchical. Your status as a polygon depends on how many sides your have. Ha! Triangles are the lowest of the low and generally are soldiers or do the menial labor. Squares are the professionals. But the Elite are circles. They see themselves as polygons with "an infinite number of sides" and are therefore PERFECT!

The Circles know about the 3rd dimension but jealously guard the knowledge, keeping it from the general population. It is heresy to even suggest that a third dimension exists, punishable by death or imprisonment, depending on your caste.

The social satire is delicious and speaks to our current discussion of bloodlines and genetic superiority. But even more interesting is the description of how beings from different dimensions might interact. This too is relevant to our times!

I won't spoil the fun for those who have not read it yet:




I would argue that we, in fact, live in Flatland, controlled by a priestly elite of 'perfect circles.' We have occasional glimpses of other dimensions and other realities, but basically we are just simple squares longing to be cubes

11th January 2011, 15:57
Thank you for posting the link. I have waited many years to read this.

11th January 2011, 16:26
Thank you for posting the link. I have waited many years to read this.

You are very welcome. It's a classic and incredibly relevant to the current situation.

12th January 2011, 00:31
Carl Sagan on Flatland: