In a dateless future, a seemingly benevolent totalitarian state has eliminated poverty, crime, war, and religious intolerance and brought the happiness of conformity to its people. Professor Burden thinks he too is a loyal citizen, but the Department of Internal Examination discovers that he secretly values his individuality. Believing Burden to be a threat to the continued existence of the State, an examiner named Lark decides to cure him of his heresy and return him to being a normal, productive member of society - by persuasion if possible but by complete obliteration of his identity if necessary.
First published in 1953, One earned critical comparisons to the great dystopian novels of Orwell and Huxley. It is both a gripping psychological thriller and an indictment of totalitarianism that is more relevant today than ever before.