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The Circle
The Circle
Dave Eggers
Knopf, 2013
504 pp., $27.95

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Chris Nye


The Circle

A resonant fable from Dave Eggers.

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The Circle is all about unexamined implications. The starting assumption of the innovators is that human beings are generally good and that we can rightly handle all that we are given. Access to a possible date's entire social media updates? Sure, that would be helpful! A tiny camera able to be placed anywhere? Of course, we'll use it for justice and whole-hearted pleasure!

But this is no standard dystopian fable. Instead of an apocalypse, Eggers leaves us with a resonant sadness. The Circle calls for change, not through massive systemic overhauls (although it's clear Eggers would welcome some of that) but through serious reflection. The Circle reminds us that technology is neither to be uncritically celebrated nor somehow deleted from the earth, but rather should be stewarded with great wisdom that goes beyond a lustful excitement for "the next innovation."

Chris Nye is a pastor and a writer living in Portland, Oregon, with his wife, Ali. Connect on Twitter: @chrisnye

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