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The Simulacra
The Simulacra
is a 1964 science fiction novel by American writer Philip K. Dick. The novel portrays a future totalitarian society apparently dominated by a matriarch, Nicole Thibodeaux. It revolves around the themes of reality and illusionary beliefs, as do many of Dick's works. Additionally, it touches on Nazi ideology.

Contents

1 Publication 2 Setting 3 Plot 4 References 5 Sources

Publication[edit] Dick originally published the story as a novelette in the magazine Fantastic, titled "The Novelty Act". He expanded the plot and titled the novel First Lady of Earth.[1] Before publication, the title was changed to The Simulacra. The novel was originally published in 1964 as a paperback by Ace Books.[2] It was one of four novels released by Dick that year.[3] Setting[edit] Set in the middle of the twenty-first century, after World War Three, The Simulacra
The Simulacra
is the story of several protagonists within the United States of Europe and America (USEA), formed by the merger of (West) Germany and the United States,[4] where the whole government is a fraud and the President (der Alte, "the Old Man") is a simulacrum (android). Other global superpowers are the French Empire, People's Republic of China and Free (Black) Africa. The war may have involved tactical nuclear weapons. Poland
Poland
has become the global focus of communist authority, with its administrative centre in Warsaw. Society is stratified into 'Ges' (German Geheimnisträger, "bearers of the secret" (the elite)) and 'Bes' (German Befehlsträger, "implementers of instruction" (professional and artisanal)) classes. Political and broadcast media power are highly consolidated. The Democratic and Republican parties have merged to become the 'Democrat-Republican Party' and the networks have amalgamated into the 'United Triadic Network'. Actual political power has devolved to a permanent First Lady, Nicole Thibodeaux, whose consorts are a series of male presidents – die Alten. The current der Alte, Rudi Kalbfleisch, is a simulacrum. Since the death of the original "Nicole", her role has been portrayed by four consecutive human actors, the latest of which is Kate Rupert. This is the Geheimnis (secret), possession of which ensures the conferral of elite Ges status. A secretive governing council controls the USEA; the manufacturer of the current der Alte-simulacrum, exerts some influence. Plot[edit] Kalbfleisch, whom Nicole dislikes, appears only momentarily in the story; because of planned obsolescence, he will soon suffer a heart attack be replaced. The contract for the next simulacrum, Dieter Hogbein, has been awarded to 'Frauenzimmer Associates', and the previous contractor, 'Karp und Söhne Werke' is unhappy about this change. One subplot involves the Karp und Söhne Werke threatening exposure of what has been a state secret over the last five decades. A. G. Chemie, the leading USEA psycho-pharmaceutical drug cartel, has engineered the prohibition of psychotherapy under the "MacPhearson Act." However, the USEA is willing to let Doctor Egon Superb continue to treat Richard Kongrosian, a well known pianist who performs in the White House, and who holds the delusory belief that his body odor is lethal. Kongrosian can play piano using only his telekinetic abilities; Nicole Thibodeaux is anxious to keep him under control, as are Wilder Pembroke, head of the National Police, and members of the covert national governance council. Bertold Goltz, an alleged neofascist, is seemingly trying to overthrow the government, and runs the 'Sons of Job', a religious paramilitary organisation. Actually, he is head of the covert USEA governing council. There is a subplot that involves Charles (Chic) Strikerock, Vince, his brother and a cut-price colonisation spacecraft sales firm (known as "Loony Lukes") involved in Martian colonisation. Mars
Mars
boasts insectoid life, the sentient and empathic 'papoola', while Ganymede is inhabited by multicellular primitive life forms. As the plot develops, the der Alte-simulacrum is revealed as an android and Kate/Nicole is disclosed as an impostor, this undoing the raison d'etre for ges/bes class stratification. Bertold Goltz is killed by a National Police detachment, as is the rest of the covert governing council. Using telekinesis, Kongrosian kills Pembroke before he can overthrow Nicole in a coup d'état and teleports her to safety at his secluded Northern US home. Karp und Sohnen rebel against the abortive coup, however, and soon the National Police and USEA armed forces are engaged in civil war, with active use of low-yield nuclear weapons.[5] Re-emerging Neanderthals (or "chuppers"), happy at this turn of events, gather near Kongrosian's home in anticipation that self-destruction of Homo sapiens might give them another opportunity to dominate Earth.[2] The novel ends before the action concludes. References[edit]

^ Lord Rc (1 July 2007). Pink Beam: A Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
Companion. Lulu.com. pp. 128–. ISBN 978-1-4303-2437-9.  ^ a b "The Simulacra: Dick keeps his multiple story lines percolating". Fantasy Literature, by Sandy Ferber. ^ "Pulp, Packaged". New York Times, By DAVE ITZKOFF JUNE 24, 2007 ^ A. Dunst; S. Schlensag (5 April 2015). The World According to Philip K. Dick. Palgrave Macmillan UK. pp. 60–. ISBN 978-1-137-41459-5.  ^ Umberto Rossi (5 April 2011). The Twisted Worlds of Philip K. Dick: A Reading of Twenty Ontologically Uncertain Novels. McFarland. pp. 118–129. ISBN 978-0-7864-8629-8. 

Sources[edit]

Rossi, Umberto, “The Great National Disaster: The Destruction of Imperial America in P.K. Dick’s The Simulacra”, RSA: Rivista di Studi Nord Americani #13/2002, pp. 22–39. Tuck, Donald H. (1974). The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Chicago: Advent. p. 142. ISBN 0-911682-20-1. 

v t e

Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(works)

Novels

Gather Yourselves Together
Gather Yourselves Together
(1950) Voices from the Street
Voices from the Street
(1952) Solar Lottery
Solar Lottery
(1954) Mary and the Giant
Mary and the Giant
(1954) The World Jones Made
The World Jones Made
(1954) Eye in the Sky (1955) The Man Who Japed
The Man Who Japed
(1955) A Time for George Stavros (1956) Pilgrim on the Hill (1956) The Broken Bubble (1956) The Cosmic Puppets
The Cosmic Puppets
(1957) Puttering About in a Small Land
Puttering About in a Small Land
(1957) Nicholas and the Higs (1958) Time Out of Joint
Time Out of Joint
(1958) In Milton Lumky Territory
In Milton Lumky Territory
(1958) Confessions of a Crap Artist
Confessions of a Crap Artist
(1959) The Man Whose Teeth Were All Exactly Alike
The Man Whose Teeth Were All Exactly Alike
(1960) Humpty Dumpty in Oakland
Humpty Dumpty in Oakland
(1960) Vulcan's Hammer
Vulcan's Hammer
(1960) Dr. Futurity
Dr. Futurity
(1960) The Man in the High Castle
The Man in the High Castle
(1961) We Can Build You
We Can Build You
(1962) Martian Time-Slip
Martian Time-Slip
(1962) Dr. Bloodmoney, or How We Got Along After the Bomb
Dr. Bloodmoney, or How We Got Along After the Bomb
(1963) The Game-Players of Titan
The Game-Players of Titan
(1963) The Simulacra
The Simulacra
(1963) The Crack in Space
The Crack in Space
(1963) Clans of the Alphane Moon (1964) The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
(1964) The Zap Gun (1964) The Penultimate Truth (1964) The Unteleported Man
The Unteleported Man
(1964) The Ganymede Takeover
The Ganymede Takeover
(1965) Counter-Clock World
Counter-Clock World
(1965) Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
(1966) Nick and the Glimmung
Nick and the Glimmung
(1966) Now Wait for Last Year
Now Wait for Last Year
(1966) Ubik
Ubik
(1966) Galactic Pot-Healer
Galactic Pot-Healer
(1968) A Maze of Death
A Maze of Death
(1968) Our Friends from Frolix 8
Our Friends from Frolix 8
(1969) Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said
Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said
(1974) Deus Irae
Deus Irae
(1976) Radio Free Albemuth
Radio Free Albemuth
(1976; published 1985) A Scanner Darkly
A Scanner Darkly
(1977) VALIS
VALIS
(1981) The Divine Invasion
The Divine Invasion
(1981) The Transmigration of Timothy Archer
The Transmigration of Timothy Archer
(1982) The Owl in Daylight (unfinished)

Collections

A Handful of Darkness
A Handful of Darkness
(1955) The Variable Man (1956) The Preserving Machine
The Preserving Machine
(1969) The Book of Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(1973) The Best of Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(1977) The Golden Man
The Golden Man
(1980) Robots, Androids, and Mechanical Oddities
Robots, Androids, and Mechanical Oddities
(1984) I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon (1985) The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(1987) Beyond Lies the Wub
Beyond Lies the Wub
(1988) The Dark Haired Girl
The Dark Haired Girl
(1989) The Father-Thing (1989) Second Variety (1989) The Days of Perky Pat
The Days of Perky Pat
(1990) The Little Black Box (1990) The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford (1990) We Can Remember It for You Wholesale (1990) The Minority Report
The Minority Report
(1991) Second Variety (1991) The Eye of the Sibyl (1992) The Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
Reader (1997) Minority Report (2002) Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(2002) Paycheck (2004) Vintage PKD
Vintage PKD
(2006) The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick
Philip K. Dick
(2011)

Short stories

"Beyond Lies the Wub" (1952) "The Gun" (1952) "The Skull" (1952) "The Little Movement" (1952) "The Defenders" (1953) "Mr. Spaceship" (1953) "Piper in the Woods" (1953) "Roog" (1953) "The Infinites" (1953) "Second Variety" (1953) "Colony" (1953) "The Cookie Lady" (1953) "Impostor" (1953) "Paycheck" (1953) "The Preserving Machine" (1953) "Expendable" (1953) "The Indefatigable Frog" (1953) "The Commuter" (1953) "Out in the Garden" (1953) "The Great C" (1953) "The King of the Elves" (1953) "The Trouble with Bubbles" (1953) "The Variable Man" (1953) "The Impossible Planet" (1953) "Planet for Transients" (1953) "The Builder" (1953) "Tony and the Beetles" (1953) "The Hanging Stranger" (1953) "Prize Ship" (1954) "Beyond the Door" (1954) "The Crystal Crypt" (1954) "The Short Happy Life of the Brown Oxford" (1954) "The Golden Man" (1954) "Sales Pitch" (1954) "Breakfast at Twilight" (1954) "The Crawlers" (1954) "Exhibit Piece" (1954) "Adjustment Team" (1954) "Shell Game" (1954) "Meddler" (1954) "A World of Talent" (1954) "The Last of the Masters" (1954) "Upon the Dull Earth" (1954) "The Father-thing" (1954) "Strange Eden" (1954) "The Turning Wheel" (1954) "The Hood Maker" (1954) "Foster, You're Dead!" (1955) "Human Is" (1955) "War Veteran" (1955) "Captive Market" (1955) "Nanny" (1955) "The Chromium Fence" (1955) "Service Call" (1955) "The Mold of Yancy" (1955) "Autofac" (1955) "Psi-man Heal My Child!" (1955) "The Minority Report" (1956) "Pay for the Printer" (1956) "A Glass of Darkness" (1956) "The Unreconstructed M" (1957) "Null-O" (1958) "Explorers We" (1959) "Recall Mechanism" (1959) "Fair Game" (1959) "War Game" (1959) "All We Marsmen" (1963) "What'll We Do with Ragland Park?" (1963) "The Days of Perky Pat" (1963) "If There Were No Benny Cemoli" (1963) "Waterspider" (1964) "Novelty Act" (1964) "Oh, to Be a Blobel!" (1964) "The War with the Fnools" (1964) "What the Dead Men Say" (1964) "Orpheus with Clay Feet" (1964) "Cantata 140" (1964) "The Unteleported Man" (1964) "Retreat Syndrome" (1965) "Project Plowshare (later "The Zap Gun")" (1965) "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale" (1966) "Faith of Our Fathers" (1967) "Not by Its Cover" (1968) "The Electric Ant" (1969) "A. Lincoln, Simulacrum" (1969) "The Pre-persons" (1974) "A Little Something for Us Tempunauts" (1974) "The Exit Door Leads In" (1979) "Rautavaara's Case" (1980) "I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon" (1980) "The Eye of the Sibyl" (1987) "Stability" (1987)

Adaptations

Films

Blade Runner
Blade Runner
(1982) Total Recall (1990) Confessions d'un Barjo
Confessions d'un Barjo
(1992) Screamers (1995) Impostor (2002) Minority Report (2002) Paycheck (2003) A Scanner Darkly
A Scanner Darkly
(2006) Next (2007) Screamers: The Hunting (2009) Radio Free Albemuth
Radio Free Albemuth
(2010) The Adjustment Bureau
The Adjustment Bureau
(2011) Total Recall (2012) 2036: Nexus Dawn (2017) 2048: Nowhere to Run (2017) Blade Runner
Blade Runner
Black Out 2022 (2017) Blade Runner
Blade Runner
2049 (2017)

TV series

Total Recall 2070
Total Recall 2070
(1999) The Man in the High Castle
The Man in the High Castle
(2015–present) Minority Report (2015) Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams (2017)

Related

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