Underground Man cover

Underground Man

Gabriel Tarde (1843-1904)

1. Introductory and I. Prosperity
2. II. The Catastrophe
3. III. The Struggle
4. IV. Saved
5. V. Regeneration
6. VI. Love
7. VII. The Aesthetic Life

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Genres

Summary

This post-apocalyptic novella tells the story of the downfall of civilisation and mankind following a solar cataclysm in the late 20th century. To survive, the remnants of humanity had to build a new civilization underground in the complete absence of all species except mankind, choosing to base it only on love and beauty, the fine arts and intellectual pursuits. In view of the sun's current inactivity, this frighteningly prophetic tale might have been written today, saving that the cultural references and the fluid prose might be beyond, if one dares say so, many modern writers. Tarde was a French sociologist, criminologist and social psychologist. This novella was, as far as I know, his only venture into the writing of fiction, and is heavy with philosophical, sociological, scientific and even political concepts. It is an absorbing and thought-provoking work.