The Annotated We
The Annotated We: A New Translation of Evgeny Zamiatin’s Novel represents the first fully annotated translation of Evgeny Zamiatin’s classic novel in English. Generally recognized as the first modern anti-utopian novel, Zamiatin’s We has puzzled scholars and critics alike, for it is both serious and playful, full of games. Long considered to be enigmatic, it stands out as unique among his works, and its importance is beyond doubt, for it not only holds the distinction of being the first work of its kind, but is also widely believed to have provided thematic elements for the two most famous dystopian works of the twentieth century, Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four.
This new English translation employs language and syntax that mirror the precision and economy of Zamiatin’s Russian in his “poem in prose.” The commentary that accompanies the text sheds light on Zamiatin’s use of language as well as on the broad array of allusions that mark it, while at the same time suggesting many previously unacknowledged sources for the novel’s playfulness.