Kallocain is a 1940 dystopian novel by Swedish novelist Karin Boye, which envisions a future of drab terror. Seen through the eyes of idealistic scientist Leo Kall, Kallocain is a depiction of a totalitarian world state. An important aspect of the novel is the relationships and connections between the various characters, such as the marriage of the main character and his wife Linda Kall, the feelings of jealousy and suspicion that may arise in a society with heavy surveillance and legal uncertainty. One of its central ideas coincides with contemporary rumors of truth drugs that ensured the subordination of every citizen to the state. Both Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and Boye's Kallocain are drug dystopias, or societies in which pharmacology is used to suppress opposition to authority. However, unlike Brave New World, where a drug is used to suppress the urge to nonconformity in Kallocain a drug is used to detect individual acts and thoughts of rebellion. Kallocain has been translated into more than 10 languages.
It was adapted into a television miniseries in 1981 by Hans Abramson. In 2016, the novel was nominated for the Retro-Hugo award for the best science fiction novel of 1941; the plot centers on Leo Kall, written in the form of a memoir. Kall lives with his wife Linda Kall in a city intended for chemical industry. Leo is a scientist, very loyal to the government and develops the truth drug Kallocain, it has the effect that anyone who takes it will reveal anything things of which they were not consciously aware. Major themes include the notion of the self in a totalitarian state, the meaning of life, the power of love. Apart from the laboratory work and testing by Leo Kall, much of the novel takes place in the home of Leo and Linda. John Hickman. "When Science Fiction Writers Used Fictional Drugs: Rise and Fall of the Twentieth-Century Drug Dystopia." Utopian Studies Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 141–170. Works by or about Karin Boye at Internet Archive "Kallocain" on IMDb Full text English translation from the University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
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