Item #27750 Last and First Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future. W. Olaf Stapledon.

Last and First Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future.

London: Methuen & Co. Ltd., 1932. First edition, first issue. A work of considerable depth, Stapledon’s novel describes the history of humanity from the present onwards across two billion years. Through a conceit that a member of a future human species has channeled the text through him, the narrator relates the evolution of the human race across eighteen different species, of which our own is the first and the future being responsible for sending the text to the narrator belongs to the last. The history relies on Hegelian Dialectic, consisting of a repetitive cycle in which civilizations rise and fall from savagery, with each successive race reaching greater heights than the first. The novel has borne extensive weight among future authors, influencing C. S. Lewis’s theological science fiction Space Trilogy, Arthur C. Clarke, and H. P. Lovecraft. In original first state dust wrapper, which is a touch faded to spine, has chips to edges, three short tears to back, creasing along spine, and small stains to front and back panel, else very good. Book itself bound in blue cloth over boards with gilt lettering, minor bumps to corners and ends of spine, with very minor foxing to pages of text block, else a fine and square copy. Bookplate of Adrian Homer Goldstone, avid collector and bibliographer of Arthur Machen and John Steinbeck, on front paste-down. Item #27750

(Barron, 2-119).

Price: $5,500.00

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