Why I love reading science fiction - Isaac Asimov

Essays on literary works - 2023

Why I love reading science fiction
Isaac Asimov

To be honest, I wouldn't say that I love it.

There are works that I really like, but, unfortunately, a lot of printed junk is published now, which can only distract from reading science fiction literature and books in general. Or knock out the last thoughts about the real world, replacing them with delusions about star empires and galactic wars.

I. Yefremov's books "Andromeda Nebula" and "Cor serrentis" occupy a prominent place in my imaginary library. These are wonderful works that make you believe that people will eventually get rid of animal cruelty and really become brothers not only among themselves, but also with the inhabitants of other star worlds.

I will put the Strugatsky brothers' books "Uninhabited Island", "It's Hard to Be a God", "An Attempt to Escape" next to it. They talk about man's responsibility for the life of the whole world - and not because he is superman, but because otherwise he is just a mammal, not an intelligent being. But being a man is even more difficult than being a god. After all, the biggest tests awaited Hal Bragg not in outer space, but at home, on Earth. S. Lem's novel "Return from the Stars" shows the terrible and unpredictable results of experiments on humanity. With the help of vaccinations, aggression has been eradicated from the planet. But the destruction of hell led to the destruction of heaven. The worst thing is that the new generations do not even suspect that a person once knew how to hate and passionately love. And now — "Shu-shu! Ages-severals sh-shu." So says one of the astronauts, that returned to the petrified Earth. And they no longer fly to the stars...

I left many bookmarks in A. Asimov's book. I read and reread "Steel Caves", "I, Robot". I believe that humanity will be able to get out of the steel caves of industrial cities, that all the stories about the robot rebellion and the end of humanity on a polluted Earth are just a stupid dream of the mind.

I am currently reading R. Bradbury's novel "Fahrenheit 451". It is about a world where reading is a state crime, keeping a book is an anti-state act, and the walls are replaced by television screens. Right now, the TV is on in the next room, some "humorous" program is playing. And so that TV viewers know where to laugh, they turn on the recording of laughter - that is, support!

If I had my way, I would hang the slogan "Turn off the TV — open the book" everywhere.