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Thanks to the vigorous tradition of postholocaust adventure stories in science fiction, the latter considerably outnumbers the former. The landscape after an atomic war is transformed in fiction in many strange and surprising ways.
Perhaps the most common attitude which people hold toward nuclear war is that such a conflict would be simply the end of the world in some sense or other. The fascination of secular apocalyptic literature, much of it drawing on traditional religious imagery of Armageddon and the Last Judgment, has been widespread in our century since long before It is no surprise, then, that works depicting nuclear war should be written from the same perspective.
The fact that in none of these works does the world end in any sense comparable to that depicted in the book of Revelation underlines the symbolic nature of this fascination with the apocalyptic theme.
But most authors—including some of those who use apocalyptic imagery— are reluctant to imagine even so modest an end as the annihilation of all human life.
The apocalypse is often rumored but seldom portrayed. Stories of the collapse of civilization abound, however, and have abounded long before the atomic bomb was developed. Le Guin strenuously refuted the claims of reviewers to see a nuclear war in the background of the work.
On occasion, even the jacket copy of a book will signal a nuclear war whereas the text contains no such thing e. Even when nuclear war clearly provides the background of a narrative, it is liable to be more or less optimistic.
This is well illustrated by the fact that the vast majority of stories and novels concentrate on the survivors, not on the victims. Those few writers who have dared to suppose that nuclear bombs might literally destroy human life imagine a variety of mechanisms leading to doomsday, one of which is the sterilization of the species through exposure to radiation.
Most writers have realized that a degree of radiation sufficient to allow some people to survive but render all of them sterile is extremely unlikely.
Yet the concept is an attractive one because it allows an author to make clear the threat to the continued existence of humanity posed by the danger of nuclear war. The earliest statement of this theme occurred in Poul Anderson and F.
Few authors are willing to consider the end of the human race, and when they do, often no less fantastic means of avoiding the end than mutation is considered. It is striking that even when extinction threatens, effective political action to end the threat of nuclear war is entirely lacking in these works.
Authors shun racial suicide, but they cannot conceive of politics as an alternative. The sense of the utter powerlessness of the ordinary citizen one gets from reading the bulk of these works is overwhelming. The authors may hope to stir their readers to action, but the nearest most of them come to political analysis is in expressing the hope that political leaders will behave wisely.
It may be that in the popular mind nuclear war is the symbol of our common death. Folk wisdom tells us that we must accept that fate as inevitable; indeed, it is much easier to resign oneself to extinction than to engage in the complicated and exhausting task of staving off an atomic Armageddon.
The mesmerizing power of the threatened end of civilization, if not of all life on Earth, seems to cast a pall over the human will. Authors are not so pessimistic as the general public in this regard. They seem to believe that nuclear war, though inevitable, is survivable—by a few.
Yet there is a certain grim logic in viewing the human race as rushing headlong into oblivion like the lemmings of folklore. We have, after all, evolved a science which enables us to destroy ourselves, and social systems which make that fate difficult to avoid.
These familiar truisms lead many writers to adopt an elegiac tone when writing of the future of the human race. In contrast with the earlier stories which are little more than variations on the horror fiction to which Bradbury was devoted early in his career and in which the Martians are the aggressors, the humans the victims, The Martian Chronicles depicts human beings as despoilers, a race which pollutes the pristine canals of Mars, smashes its precious artifacts, and disregards the wisdom left behind by the noble ancient Martian civilization.
Only isolated individuals here and there display sensitivity and understanding, at the price of radical alienation from the rest of humanity.“My Kinsman, Major Molineux” casts light on one of the most striking elements in Hawthorne’s fiction: the lack of functioning families in his works.
Although Cooper’s Leather-Stocking Tales manage to introduce families into the least. More sinister was Keyes’s fear of the brutalizing effects of war’s violence on the combatant’s imagination, as in his extraordinary poem “Gilles de Retz.” Gilles de Retz not only fought with Joan of Arc but later became the infamous Bluebeard, serial torturer, abuser, and killer of children snatched from peasant families on his demesne.
Custom essay writing service. Custom writing service. /12/ What are the effects of never resolving your oedipal complex? And when a situation becomes to over whelming, do we project our thought and feelings on to our peers?
My Oedipus Complex.
In Frank O’Connor’s short story “My Oedipus Complex” he writes about a young boy named Larry, who is use to his fathers absence because of World War.
In the novel, Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl, the main character, Anne Frank, and her family were prosecuted for being Jews during World War 2. Along with two other families, to save their lives, they took refuge in entering the Secret Annex to escape the barbaric prosecution by the Nazis.
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