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Submitted Literature

A Scanner Darkly

By Philip K Dick


Postmodern, futuristic, science fictional novel examining drug addiction, neurological damage and paranoia alongside notions of identity within the postmodern world.

Key Themes:

  • Addiction
  • Postmodern Madness
  • Psychosis
  • Revealing Reads

Significant Quotes / Pages

1 – “Once a guy stood all day shaking bugs from his hair.  The doctor told him there were no bugs in his hair.  After he had taken a shower for eight hours, standing under hot water hour after hour suffering the pain of the bugs, he got out and dried himself, and he still had bugs in his hair; in fact, he had bugs all over him.  A month later he had bugs in his lungs.”

24 – “Every pay phone in the world was tapped.  Or if it wasn’t, some crew somewhere just hadn’t gotten around to it.  The taps fed electronically onto storage reels at a central point, and about once every second day a print-out was obtained by an officer who listened to many phones without having to leave his office.  He merely rang up the storage drums and, on signal, they played back, skipping all dead tape.  Most calls were harmless.  The officer could identify ones that weren’t fairly readily.  That was his skill.  That was what he got paid for.  Some officers were better at it than others.”



Reference: Philip K, Dick. 1977. A Scanner Darkly. London: Millennium / Gollancz, 1999


- Charley Baker
Date Review Submitted: Friday 20th March 2009