The Edge of the Knife part 1 of 13 of the Terro Human Future History
The Science Fiction Novella, the Edge of the Knife, written by H. Beam Piper, formulated truth is vital in a free society, especially when truth may create unrest. Piper hid his important message in the passages of Science Fiction Publications;
“And I don't read inside-dope magazines, or science fiction. I read carefully substantiated facts. And I know when I'm talking to a sane and reasonable man.”*
The 1950's was a period where the telling of truth could sentence you to the sanitarium, for uncivilized thinking.
1957 was a year in the height of the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States of America. The Gaither Report alarmed the American people to the dangers of the Atomic Age. The report asked Good Citizens, to support the buildup of Atomic Power. The report also encouraged good citizens to go back to the shelter of the cave (fallout shelters). ***
The Knife’s Edge follows the trial of a Professor who can see the future before it actually occurs. He stands on the Knife’s Edge:
“all… things … exist, in the past or in the future, and that the present is just a moving knife-edge that separates the two. You can't even indicate the present. By the time you make up your mind to say, 'Now!' and transmit the impulse to your vocal organs, and utter the word, the original present moment is part of the past. The knife-edge has gone over it. Most people think they know only the present; what they know is the past, which they have already experienced, or read about. The difference with me is that I can see what's on both sides of the knife-edge."**
When everyone has gone crazy with fear, what is the informed citizen to do? Should you stick to the proper form of speech, “Your business is with the past; stick to it."**** Or do you blow the whistle and tell of the harm down by the powerful.
The book was recommended by Good Reads. I totally loved it, and can’t believe that I had not heard of H. Beam Piper.
*Piper, H. Beam (2011-03-24). The Edge of the Knife (Kindle Locations 523-524). Kindle Edition.
** Piper, H. Beam (2011-03-24). The Edge of the Knife (Kindle Locations 145-149). Kindle Edition.
***The year was also the first appearance of the Frisbee by Whamo, and the year that Elvis (age 22) bought his home, he called Graceland.
****Piper, H. Beam (2011-03-24). The Edge of the Knife (Kindle Location 176). Kindle Edition.
Listen to it on Libri Vox or read it for free on the Guttenberg.