Life in the Year 6000 by Santiago Ramón y Cajal: A Translation of an Unpublished "Vacation Story"


In 2006, Laura Otis provided the first English translation of five short stories written by the Spanish artist, neuroscientist, and histologist Santiago Ramón y Cajal. These stories, originally published in 1905 by Cajal under the pseudonym "Dr. Bacteria," are called "Cuentos de vacaciones: narraciones seudocientíficas" or "Vacation Stories: Pseudoscientific Tales." In 1973, a version of Cajal's manuscript "La vida en el año 6000" (Life in the year 6000) was revealed. It had remained in manuscript form since the mid-1880s and appears to be a draft of one of Cajal's unpublished "Cuentos de vacaciones." The present work is a translation of this manuscript, which is archived in the Cajal Institute in Madrid. It details the protagonist's observations, especially regarding advances in science and medicine, when he suddenly awakes in the year 6000 AD.