What is "The Fun They Had" by Isaac Asimov?


Quick Answer

"The Fun They Had" is a science-fiction story by Isaac Asimov that describes computerized schooling of the future. Set in 2157, the story centers on two characters, Margie and Tommy, and their reactions to a book describing life in a 20th-century school. The story first appeared in 1951.

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The story opens with a discussion of a book that Tommy found. The book is a novelty to the children, who typically read computerized texts. They wonder what it was like to read words that don't move. As they begin to read the book, they confront even stranger truths about the past. For example, they discover that children did not learn alone at home from computerized teachers but from real people in schools with dozens of other students. Margie finds this past attractive compared with the alienating loneliness of her scholastic life.

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