Study Guide

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Allusions

By Philip K. Dick

Allusions

Literary and Philosophical References

  • John Donne, Meditation XVII (13.22&23) — the phrase "no man is an island" comes from this famous work.
  • William Shakespeare (13.23)
  • Edgar Rice Burroughs, The Venus Series (13.49) — many science fiction stories take place on a fictional Venus covered in forest, but Pris's mention of "huge monsters and women in breastplates that glistened" make us think she is referencing this "sword-and-plant" science fiction series.
  • "Time and tide wait for no man" (16.3) — read the history of this famous phrase here.
  • John Bradford (16.29) — Rachael's comment alludes to the famous phrase, "There but for the grace of God, go I." Often attributed to John Bradford, an English evangelical preacher and martyr (source).

Historical References

  • Wilder Graves Penfield (1.2), (8.33) — a Canadian neurosurgeon who made great strides in neural stimulation and the namesake of the Penfield mood organ.
  • Ivan Petrovich Pavlov (3.10)
  • Leningrad (4.18) — the city is known as St. Petersburg today.
  • Currier and Ives (5.18) — a historical American printmaking firm.
  • Bataan Death March (9.59)
  • Adolf Hitler (18.58)

Pop Culture References

  • Gresham's Law (6.25)
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Don Giovanni (8.41)
  • Elisabeth Schwarzkopf (8.41), (9.12)
  • Charlotte "Lotte" Lehmann (8.41)
  • Lisa Della Casa (8.41)
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's The Magic Flute (9.1-4), (12.113)
  • Henry Purcell (9.45)
  • Sir William Turner Walton (9.45)
  • Vaughn Williams (9.45)
  • Edvard Munch (12.3)
  • Edvard Munch's The Scream (12.10)
  • Edvard Munch's Puberty (12.14), (12.80)
  • Pablo Picasso (12.79)
  • The Mars Canals Theory (13.51)
  • Greta Garbo (13.65)
  • Josef Strauss' My Life is Love and Pleasure, Op. 263 (15.51)

San Francisco References

  • Lombard Street (3.1), (9.120)
  • Nob Hill (3.3)
  • Fisherman's Wharf (5.14)
  • The Tenderloin (8.31)
  • The War Memorial Opera House & San Francisco Opera company (8.40), (8.92), (11.48)
  • Westin St. Francis Hotel (15.163)