#10572 What Not: A Prophetic Comedy. Rose Macaulay.
Rose Macaulay

What Not: A Prophetic Comedy

Rose Macaulay's What Not is a dystopian novel and feminist satire about an authoritarian, post-war England. The story features the ominous "Ministry of Brains," a governmental body that categorizes individuals based on their intelligence and arranges marriages to foster a society of intellectually advanced citizens. This pioneering work, which delves deep into the realms of social engineering and totalitarian control, echoes themes later explored in prominent dystopian novels such as Huxley's Brave New World and Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. This edition is identified as a "second impression" on the page opposite the title page. Initially published in 1918, the first copies were purportedly withdrawn due to potential libel implications concerning passages that depicted a magistrate indulging in political blackmail. The second edition was reissued in 1919 with the contentious sections removed. [SFE].

Hardcover. First Edition, Second Impression. Octavo, blue-gray cloth, front panel stamped in black and blind, spine panel stamped in black. London: Constable and Company Ltd., 1919. #10572.
Age darkening to cloth, especially along spine. Wear with shallow chipping at spine ends. Rear hinge and spine panel have been carefully repaired with glue. Overall a good example of this scarce early example of dystopian literature.