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McCowan, Archibald

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

(?   -?   ) US author whose first novel of interest is Philip Meyer's Scheme: A Story of Trades Unionism (1892) as by Luke A Hedd [ie "look ahead"]; its protagonist, after writing a pamphlet espousing the Utopian socialism of Edward Bellamy in Looking Backward (1888), takes it on himself to unite the workers in the Near Future real world. By 1910, the world has been transformed for the better. The Billionaire: A Peep into the Future (1900 chap), easily readable as a Satire on the Gilded Age in America, follows the progress of a ruthless entrepreneur whose Invention – a device that freezes oxygen out of the atmosphere – allows him to sell breathable air at a huge profit. In later years, repenting of his greed, he attempts to become a philosophically-minded philanthropist, but his taste is so terrible that no one will accept his egregious donations. [JC]

Archibald McCowan


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