I remember reading about this book/story on Wikipedia as if it were yesterday, but no matter how hard I try, I can't find it again.

An astronaut is stranded on Mars and almost starves to death. In desperation, she decides to try the teleporter, which is apparently dangerous technology. It works perfectly, and she walks out to a beautiful day on Earth. However, she becomes obsessed with thinking she's an impostor, and that the "real" person was destroyed on Mars. She feels guilty that her children are "motherless" because the teleporter "killed" their real mother on Mars. The rest of the book is about the philosophy of teleportation--are you the same person after teleportation, or a completely different one?

Any help is appreciated. I'm beginning to think this isn't a real story--but that would be very creepy, because it would mean I hallucinated a lot of details that I think I remember clearly.

  • Sort of like the story described in this still unanswered question, but different.
    – user14111
    Feb 14, 2015 at 8:53

1 Answer 1


It's from "The Mind's I" by Douglas Hofstadter. Do a search for the title and you may find an e-book version. The book is actually non-fiction and about the philosphy of the self, but it opens with this "story":

"You see the moon rise in the east. You see the moon rise in the west. You watch two moons moving toward each other across the cold black sky, one soon to pass behind the other as they continue on their way. You are on Mars, millions of miles from home, protected from the killing frostless cold of the red Martian desert by fragile membranes of terrestrial technology. Protected but stranded, for your spaceship has broken down beyond repair. You will never again return to Earth, to the friends and family and places you left behind.

But perhaps there is hope in the communication compartment of the disabled craft you find a Teleclone Mark IV teleporter and instructions for its use...."

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