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by Frederik Pohl

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Author: Frederik Pohl
ISBN: 0575025662
Language: English
Publisher: Trafalgar Square; Book Club Edition. edition (January 1, 1979)
Rating: 4.8
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FB2 size: 1776 kb | EPUB size: 1384 kb | DJVU size: 1475 kb

Subtitled, with savage irony, 'The Making of a Utopia', Jem is one of Frederik Pohl's most powerful novels.

Subtitled, with savage irony, 'The Making of a Utopia', Jem is one of Frederik Pohl's most powerful novels.

This book was absorbing, interesting, and kept me picking it up to see what would happen next.

Frederik Pohl in 1967 . Sam Falk/The New York Times. Perhaps the most famous of his anti-utopian novels was The Space Merchants, a prescient satire that Mr. Pohl wrote in the early 1950s with Cyril M. Kornbluth. In his grim 1979 novel, Jem: The Making of a Utopia, high-minded colonists to a distant planet end up making the same mistakes that have already doomed civilization on Earth.

Find many great new & used options and get the best deals for Jem: The Making of a Utopia by Frederik . Authors: Pohl, Frederik. We take pride in serving you. Binding: Hardcover. Read full description.

Authors: Pohl, Frederik. See details and exclusions.

The discovery of another habitable world might spell salvation to the three (Food Bloc, Fuel Bloc & People Bloc) bitterly competing power blocs of the war torn & resource-starved 21st century. But when their representatives arrive on Jem, with its three intelligent species, they discover instead the perfect situation into which to export their rivalries. Subtitled, with savage irony, 'The Making of a Utopia', Jem is one of Frederik Pohl's most powerful novels.

Frederik Pohl Frederik Pohl, one of the most honored science fiction writers of our time, gives us an extraordinary vision of a New York yet to come - from the wounded, struggling.

Frederik Pohl, one of the most honored science fiction writers of our time, gives us an extraordinary vision of a New York yet to come - from the wounded, struggling behemoth of tomorrow to the domed, atmospherically controlled megalopolis of the twenty-first century.

This book does not appear to be part of a series Subtitled, with savage irony, 'The Making of a Utopia', Jem is one of Frederik Pohl's most powerful novels. No excerpt currently exists for this novel.

This book does not appear to be part of a series. If this is incorrect, and you know the name of the series to which it belongs, please let us know. Submit Series Details.

Frederik Pohl, one of the most productive science fiction writers in the United States, has died at age 9. Pohl also wrote Jem: The Making of a Utopia, a grim novel published in 1979 for which he won a National Book Award.

Frederik Pohl, one of the most productive science fiction writers in the United States, has died at age 93. Pohl, best known for the satirical anti-utopian novel The Space Merchant, died Monday in a hospital in Palatine, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, The New York Times reported Wednesday. Can you use a Schengen visa on more than one trip to different countries?

Jem: The Making of a Utopia, by Frederik Pohl, (br) Foundation Jan . Common Mistakes We Make in Bedrooms, (ar) Ladies’ Home Journal Oct 1 1910. Who’s Who in This Issue, (cl) The Blue Book Magazine Aug 1946. GREENLUND, DAVE (chron

Jem: The Making of a Utopia, by Frederik Pohl, (br) Foundation Jan 1980. Looking for the Mahdi, by N. Lee Wood, (br) Foundation Sum 1997. The Lunar Effect, by Arnold L. Lieber, (br) Foundation Feb 1981. Common Mistakes We Make in Halls, (ar) Ladies’ Home Journal Sep 1 1910. GREENLEAF, MARY PAGE (chron. Answer, (pm) Sunset Aug 1904. GREENLUND, DAVE (chron. , (lt) Bluebook Nov 1953.

Jem by Frederik Pohl - book cover, description, publication history. Genre: Science Fiction. Similar books by other authors. Life During Wartime Lucius Shepard. Eon (Eon, book 1) Greg Bear. Babel-17 Samuel R Delany. Wasp Eric Frank Russell.

The discovery of another habitable world might spell salvation to the three bitterly competing power blocs of the resource-starved 21st century; but when their representatives arrive on Jem, with its multiple intelligent species, they discover instead the perfect situation into which to export their rivalries. Subtitled, with savage irony, 'The Making of a Utopia', Jem is one of Frederik Pohl's most powerful novels.
Comments (7)
Kigabar
Based upon the premise of light-year space travel in the 1980s, "Jem" shows us how we cannot escape the frailties of human nature even as we attempt to populate new worlds. The story is an exciting one, including rampant commercialism and competition on Earth, political corruption, military intrigue, and even love interests. We encounter sentient but highly different alien life-forms that only we, as humans, know best how to dominate and exploit. This book is certainly one of the best science fiction stories I have read.
Hawk Flying
Print wasn't well done -- too small, inconsistent, etc. It's the only option I can find since there's no eBook version that I know of, but disappointing nonetheless.
Majin
Absolutely fantastic book, if you like Frederik Pohl. I did like Gateway better, but I'd say this is my 2nd favorite of his books.
Dikus
From the 1950's to the 70's, it seems that a number of science fiction writers published dual books considered essential reading for the field. There's Alfred Bester's The Demolished Man and The Stars My Destination, Ursula K. LeGuin's The Left Hand of Darkness and The Dispossessed, and then Frederik Pohl's Gateway and Man Plus. These novel's cannot be more highly recommended for those that enjoy reading science fiction. For those that enjoyed Pohl's other two mentioned novel's and want to read more by him, Jem would be next in line. It should be noted that this is the end of the line. After Man Plus (1976), Gateway (1977), Jem (1979), is The Blue Event Horizon (1980) which is sub-par and the novels after that, Sunburst, The Cool War, go downhill from there. It's difficult to be tough on Pohl here because Gateway is perhaps my all time favorite novel. Jem is still within Pohl's sphere of his Gateway peak and has enjoyable parts.

The novel consists of trinities. There are the three Bloc's on earth: the Food Bloc, the Fuel Bloc, and the People Bloc, derisively called by each other as the Fats, the Greasies, and the Peep's, respectively. These Bloc's have some unlikely constituents. The Food Bloc for instance consists of the United States, Bulgaria, and the Soviet Union. England is the enemy as it is within the Fuel Bloc. If it takes a moment to consider why England would be, it was due to their North Atlantic oil fields. I don't know how productive these oil fields are today, but this was written back in the 70's. And the People Bloc consists of what can be expected: countries like China and Pakistan. Pohl doesn't completely ignore real world politics as China has political pull within other Blocs. However to consider that the United States and the former Soviet Union are buddy-buddies and that the English and Scot's are the vicious enemies is stretching the imagination quite a bit. The political divisions then were between democratic and totalitarian countries. Yes, the US will team up with the Soviet Union against an immediate threat like Nazi Germany, but against England or Norway?... for their oil fields? How about Nazi Germany and Jew's teaming against the Ukraine for their wheat fields? It's been whitewashed by many about the brutalities of the Soviet Union. Many people have an image of Russian's as happy round faced people slapping each other on the back as they invite you into their homes for a friendly shot of vodka around a table seated with a large family and group of close friends as opposed to a country that carried out the systematic murder of 20 million people, of the Red Army as it swept through Europe occupying countries before them (or `liberated' as leftists would say), or the mass rapes of the women of East Germany or elsewhere. Are there mass rapes of the women of France from WWII?, does a significant part of the Italian populace look suspiciously like Iowan corn farmers?, are there mass graves being discovered in the forests of Norway because the US didn't like their brand of socialist-democracy or, heck, for their gold?, like the mass graves found in Poland of those killed by the Soviets.

The other trinity are the three sentient races discovered on the planet called Jem. These races occupy different ecosystems of the planet. The Creepies live underground, the Krinpit are huge 400 lb crablike creatures that live on the surface, and the Balloonists live aloft in the atmosphere. Another stretch of the imagination occurs when Pohl suggests that colonists and scientists would indiscriminately murder several sentient species on another planet to study their anatomy. So obviously this book is an allegory of the powers of the 70's to form alliances with the Third World. So was it `right' for the US to interfere in the politics of small countries to prevent them from being communist puppet nations of the Soviet Union. Or is Pohl suggesting here that a coed in Nebraska, or a housewife in Seattle, or a fisherman in Maine would want to burn down the embassies of, and bring the downfall of, for instance, the Danish government because a Danish cartoonist depicted Americans as fat, hamburger eating sloths?

OK, so those are what I see as problems and naiveté of the novel. The good points are in references to slavery or serfdom. All adults know, or should know, that yes one has to work for a living. There's a saying that goes: those that don't work, don't eat. Ok, simple enough. But it's one thing to have a society where one has a choice to become an engineer, doctor, lawyer, librarian, waiter, actress, compared to a society where one has no other choice than to become an underground miner. It's your free choice... or starve. Or that you have to work in a mine and then will be inoculated with the antidote against the disease that was injected in your body, or you're `free' to die from that disease. Here it sounds as if Pohl is almost criticizing Communism, in an Animal Farm sort-of-way, where heck there were `free' elections... you're `free' to vote for the one Communist candidate that's on the election ballot.

Jem follows the style of several SF books that investigate the interactions of humans with alien sentient races, such as Robert Forward's Dragon Egg, James Hogan's Code of the Life-Maker, or Niven & Pournelle's Footfall, and show the perspective from the alien's point of view with names that have hyphens or apostrophes in them. Pohl gives a fair amount of perspective from the Balloonists, some from the Krinpit's and scant from the Creepies.

I'm not sure if the title Jem itself is supposed to be relevant. Jem is short for the planets official name N-OA Bes-bes Geminorum 8426. However since the novel is about Utopia or the loss of a potential Utopia, the book title is also obviously referencing a glittering precious stone, a `gem'. However, Pohl begins the word with the letter "J". So does JEM stand for something else?, is it some sort of acronym: J.E.M.? (Pohl uses several acronyms in his book: HMG, ERW, GORR, without defining them), there's three letters in the word, probably referencing the trinities in the novel. There are no obvious answers here.

The major downpoint of the novel is that it rambles on; is not quite cohesive. Although not a huge novel at 312 pages, it seems it could have used some editing and paring down. After the novel is finished, the good points are the reflections on serfdom, a good treatise on a mechanism used in many other novels that write about planets in a federation that downslide in technology or culture as that federation falls, and as a cautionary tale of how settling a new land/planet with great potential can be botched up.
Malarad
I am an avid reader and devour books at an alarming rate. This book sucked me in from the moment I started to read it.
Whiteflame
Near future first contact sci-fi. Competing cynical blocs of Earth countries discover and send first contact ships to a newly discovered planet that could be habitable by humans. Earth's factions degenerate into devastating nuclear war while the fledgling planet encampments follow suit on a much smaller scale, wiping out or forever corrupting the sentient alien life surrounding them. A hard, cynical, negative look at how mankind is ultimately selfish to the point of destroying himself in the attempt to manipulate or destroy everything he can and how the promise of a utopian new beginning proves to be just another illusion in that endless cycle.
Wal
I liked this novel. The new planet Jem and its strange new lifeforms were written very well. Jem orbits a tiny, not-very-hot star the same way our Moon orbits Earth. That is, with one side always light and the opposite side dark. Three sentient species inhabit the planet: mole-like Creepies who live underground in burrows, crab-like Krinpit on the surface, and flying Balloonists who never land. If the story had been more about the interesting animals, I would have enjoyed the book better. I did not like any of the human characters. By the second hundred pages, I was already hoping they would all die. But of course they don't. People on Earth bomb each other to bits and the related factions on Jem almost follow suit, being stopped only by a natural disaster. The resulting civilization is an utopian parody; it reminds me of "Animal Farm". Everything is "freely given" or not given at all. The native sentients of Jem work for the humans because they can't do otherwise after their planet is subdued by humans. It's repulsive, but realistic, to imagine that humans would do no better with a new planet than they have with their first one, even after all their experience and knowledge. I prefer happier fantasies.
I read this novel years ago and found numerous elements of it interesting. In particular the separation of the nations of the world into three blocs (Fuel, Food, & People) with the U.S. and the British actually being in different ones (U.S. in the Food Bloc, British in the Fuel Bloc). And almost every nation in each of the Blocs heavily armed with nuclear weapons.

Also something somewhat rare for that era of science fiction novels was the considerable time the novel spends on the sex lives of the major character.

Ultimately, I'm unsure how to describe the end of the novel. Depressing? Confusing? Hopeful? The reader can largely take their pick. In many ways I think the author was overambitious and had trouble finding a satisfactory resolution.