Grace Palley has said, "All fiction is a lie, but at the heart of that lie is a truth." This quote directly applies to Issac Asimov's, Foundation. Science Fiction deals with events that did happened, may have happened, or have not yet happened to a certain degree. Foundation has symbolic revelation of corrupt power and the quest for the truth. Foundation, like many science fiction novels, contains symbolism, which reflects the deep core of truth with all lives while outwardly representing improbable people, places and things. According to Grace Palley's statement it is easy to compare Foundation with today's society as well as the past.
Foundation mainly deals with social unrest in the far future. The events, places, and especially characters reflect today's society on a much higher and surreal level. The only difference between science fiction and the truth is technology. The most amazing part of Foundation is that technology changed but the personality, character, and disposition of the human race did not.
The main characters, which range from scientists, warlords, politicians, scholars, to businessmen reflect their stereotypical title precisely. The powerful are the corrupt, and the corrupt are the powerful. In today's society that is not far fetched. You can see the evils of this world with great power and authority. The warlords and politicians of powerful planets are greedy and the people of Foundation are simple and helpless. We can compare the people of Foundation to the people of third world countries, to some extent.
Isaac Asimov, through his invented science of psychohistory predicted that the future will be nothing more than reenactments of the past. Hari Seldon, the founder of psychohistory in Foundation was under the threat of the galactic supremacy for his work. He was put on trial for treason against the galactic supremacy and thereafter was sent to exile, along with his followers, to a planet, which he called the Foundation. He believed that the truth lies in the past and that psychohistory reveals that. The basic plot of Foundation is how to predict the end of the rule of the Galactic Empire, and to minimize the downfall that follows. To break the fall for the universe, the colony of scholars and scientists was formed without weapons or resources other than their ingenuity. There is much truth to psychohistory and as I read the book it seemed very rational and real to me. The present is a reflection of the past and the future is a reflection on the present. As Hari Seldon stated "Psychohistory, which can predict the fall, can make statements concerning the succeeding dark ages."(37). Hari proved that future can be predicted by was of history.
The most obvious truth to Foundation is how the universe was going to be helped. Hari Seldon proposed saving the knowledge of the race (37). Foundation had no money, no precious metal, and no power or military. All the people of that planet dedicate themselves to saving and preserving the human knowledge, by creating the Encyclopedia Galactica. An example of Asimov's message of the repetitive nature of history is in the central idea of the story itself. The way the future galaxy was to be saved from the barbarism by way of the preservation of knowledge is an indisputable parallel to the Earth's own period known as the renaissance. The renaissance was the beginning of the triumph of the Greco-Roman scientific perspective on life over the Medieval Judeo-Christian perspective. This transformation from the dark ages to a better world by way of science and knowledge.
In conclusion, the basis of Foundation is drawn from none other than the history of Earth. All of these parallels between Asimov's predictions of future sociological problems and their solutions and those past support Grace Palley's statement.. The characterization of Foundation is extremely realistic and human-like as well. Grace Palley was correct with her statement "All fiction is a lie, but at the heart of that lie is a truth."