“The Mold of Yancy” is a 1955 science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick. It is about a highly influential man near Jupiter, whose opinions attract some high level and unwanted attention.
The Mold of
A whole generation is growing up looking to Yancy for an answer to everything.
Friends, I sit around my computer everyday, like I imagine many of you do. And often, when I am stuck on some sort of good, old-fashioned brain twister, I will turn my attention to an internet search engine, such as Google. This almost always helps me solve my problems, and without much effort either. (Cue darkening eyes, and a change of background scenery.) However, that, in itself, may be part of the problem. I fear that we, as a society, have become accustomed to always looking to the internet for answers – even before we have made any effort to puzzle it out for ourselves. But we can change! We don’t have to be slaves to our phones or computers any longer! So, the next time you have a problem and are tempted to “Google” the answer, remember this – and see if you just can’t figure it out on your own.
The citizens on Jupiter’s moon, Callisto, have attracted the attention of some government officers on Earth. The G-men think there is something fishy going on there… and they are right! Officer Taverner and his team are sent on a woefully flimsy undercover mission to see if those people in Jovian space are under a totalitarian government. On arrival they learn that the local opion maker, John Edward Yancy, has influenced public opinion on nearly every subject. More investigation is called for, and Taverner finds loads of help from a method that often brings corrupt, shady tactics to light: a disgruntled employee!
My Two Cents
- Story: – A very cool story which is eerily reminiscent of today’s society! The only short-coming was that it was too short – yeah, I wish it would have been longer.
- Writing: – I really like Philip K. Dick’s writing style, but it can take a little while to figure out what is going on with the story.
- Fun Factor: – This story was great fun to read! The setting and tone really enhanced the message and made it feel overall more creepy.
Where To Find The Mold of Yancy
- This story first appeared in the August 1955 edition of If magazine.
- You can read it for free online at the Defective Yeti web site.
- It is also one of the stories in Philip K. Dick’s awesome collection The Minority Report and Other Classic Stories.
Craving More SF Stories Like This One?
If you liked “The Mold of Yancy” then you may enjoy “The Gun” which is also by Philip K. Dick. It is about the crew of a spaceship and the deadly automatic weapon they discover!