The World Jones Made

The World Jones Made

infobox Book |
name = The World Jones Made
title_orig =
translator =

image_caption = Cover of first edition (paperback)
author = Philip K. Dick
illustrator =
cover_artist =
country = United States
language = English
series =
genre = Science fiction novel
publisher = Ace Books
release_date = 1956
english_release_date =
media_type = Print (Hardcover & Paperback)
pages = 192 pp
isbn = NA
preceded_by =
followed_by =
"The World Jones Made" is a 1956 science fiction novel by Philip K. Dick examining notions of precognition, humanity, and politics. It was first published by Ace Books as one half of Ace Double D-150, bound dos-à-dos with "Agent of the Unknown" by Margaret St. Clair.

Plot summary

"The World Jones Made" is set in c2002 CE. On a then-future post-apocalyptic Earth, there was a devastating conflict that involved the use of nuclear weapons. Many United States cities were targeted, and the Peoples Republic of China (and Soviet Union) also collapsed, leading to the imposition of a Federal World Government (Fedgov).

In this dystopia, Relativism emerged as the governing political orthodoxy. Relativism is said to be a moral and ethical philosophy that states everyone is free to believe what they wish, as long as they don't make anyone else try to follow that principle, which has become established law after the destructiveness of the war unleashed by ideologies. (However, dissidents from that orthodoxy do end up in forced labor camps). This sacrosanct principle is challenged by a man named Floyd Jones, whose assertions about the future prove correct.

Relativism enables legal consumption of drugs like heroin and marijuana, as well as watching live sex shows with hermaphrodite human mutants. Due to the mutagenic effects of radiation from wartime nuclear exchanges, mutants earn their living within the entertainment industry, although one group has been subjected to deliberate genetic engineering, which later enables them to settle an (inhabitable) Venus.

Doug Cussick is an agent of Fedgov (the world government), and his involvement with Jones encompasses this book. Jones has precognitive abilities that let him see a year into the future, which allows Dick to explore questions of predestination, free will and determinism.

Fedgov (and Jones) encounter an apparently unintelligent alien lifeforms named Drifters, which turn out to be one gamete of a spore-based migratory alien life form, and whose xenophobic destruction leads to alien quarantine of the Solar System. Jones foresees his own birth (and death) one year before they actually happen, but makes no attempt to stop the latter event. However, he and his followers create a cult that overthrows Fedgov, leading to the resettlement of Doug, his wife Nina and their three year-old son on Venus, in an artificial habitat.

The novel addresses questions of Jones' agenda and trustworthiness, as well as the ambiguous benefits of individual precognition.

Other works

"The World Jones Made" seems to be the antithesis of another, contemporary Dick novel, The Man Who Japed (1956). In the latter, Morec- a conservative and puritanical governing philosophy- rules a different post-apocalyptic Earth.

External links

* [ Official PKDick website review]
* [ "The World Jones Made" cover art gallery]

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