Sunday, August 18, 2019

Ray Bradbury’s There Will Come Soft Rains and James Tiptree Jr.s The L

Ray Bradbury’s "There Will Come Soft Rains" and James Tiptree Jr.'s "The Last Flight of Dr. Ain" - Probable Futures of our World Since the beginning of time mankind has predicted the end of the universe. From early Christians to science fiction authors of the 20th century, each generation has had its own vision of how life on earth will cease to exist. In earlier times though, most apocalyptic ideas consisted of the "hand of God," or God’s figures punishing humankind for its sins and ending human existence. However, in the mid-twentieth century many more scientific ideas of the apocalypse appeared. Ray Bradbury’s "There Will Come Soft Rains," which was published in 1950, is a post-nuclear apocalyptic tale. "The Last Flight of Dr. Ain," written in 1969 by James Tiptree Jr. is a story about the world ending due to biological terrorism. Amazingly, over 30 years since the publication of the latter, these ideas are currently two of the most prevalent thoughts on how the world will come to end. "There Will Come Soft Rains" illustrates the devastating effects of nuclear warfare. Bradbury’s use of vivid and poignant details to describe the end of world shows exactly how unforgiving nuclear weapons are. "The house stood alone in a city of rubble and ashes†¦. At night the city gave off a radioactive glow which could be seen for miles" (Bradbury 719). It is almost impossible to imagine this landscape appearing in real life; almost everything destroyed, and the buildings that are still standing left in shambles. Weapons of mass destruction, such as nuclear warheads, seem to have God-like powers. They can level an entire city in one swift blow, and whoever has possession of the most of them rules the world. In an instant everything is d... ...both be probable futures of our world. In the case of these two stories, science fiction and reality seem to almost overlap, and in a not too distant future they could become one. Bibliography Anthrax. 5 November 2001. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. 30 November 2001. http://www.fda.gov/cber/vaccine/anthrax.htm Bradbury, Raymond Douglas. "There Will Come Soft Rains." The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Ed. Garyn G. Roberts. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2001. 718-722 "Bush Bioterrorism Funding Request Low, CDF Chief Says" Baltimore Sun. 30 November 2001. 30 November 2001. http://chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/bal-te.anthrax30nov30.story Tiptree Jr., James. "The Last Flight of Dr. Ain." The Prentice Hall Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Ed. Garyn G. Roberts. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2001. 915-921

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