This would have been pre-1990s. The hero rambles on about the great alien war that humans eventually won. By the time you get to the end of the short story, you realize that the aliens actually won, and to forestall a revolt have kept the Earth in a Matrix-like state of complete unawareness of the true situation. Very creepy - would like to find again - author/title?

  • Could you please expand on "Matrix-like state" for the benefit of those of us who have not seen that movie? – user14111 Aug 29 '17 at 0:28
  • Re: Matrix-like state - in the film " The Matrix ", humans have been conquered/enslaved, but unaware of it, thanks to the manipulation of their understanding of reality. Also called " gaslighting " - the creation of an altered sense of the target's grasp of mundane life, and is achieved with subtle changes in the mundane touchpoints of what people assume to be objective, consensual reality. In this story, the Protagonist is convinced by the general social acceptance, textbooks, school lessons, films, monuments, etc. that the aliens were defeated and all was well. – MacSeumas Aug 30 '17 at 16:07

"Eight o clock in the morning " by Ray Nelson

Eight O'Clock in the Morning (1963) is a very short science fiction story by Ray Faraday Nelson where the main character, George Nada, is accidentally “woken up” to a new reality of the world ... the reality that has been kept from all humankind.

The question now is: what will he do with that knowledge?

This is an original story with an interesting premise: [What would happen if there were aliens living among us, controlling every aspect of our lives (even the way we perceive reality), and a hypnotist's command to wake up from the trance unexpectedly broke the aliens' spell, too?

The movie They Live (1988) was based on this story

  • A good story, but how well does it fit the OP's recollection that "The hero rambles on about the great alien war that humans eventually won"? As I remember it the hypnotized people have no recollection of winning a war with aliens. And that the earth is ruled by aliens is revealed at the beginning, not the end of the story. Of course the OP could be remembering those parts wrong, or I could be remembering wrong. Need to reread the story. – user14111 Aug 31 '17 at 21:50
  • You can read Ray Nelson's "8:00" for free at archive.org/details/… – user14111 Aug 31 '17 at 22:01
  • Having read it now (thanks for the link @user14111!) - it's definitely not the OP's story and it is definitely worth reading! They Live expanded it very well for the screen! – davidbak 10 hours ago

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.