How do these stories fit into the Science Fiction genre? What events make this story fit into the science fiction genre? (can include setting, technology used, events from the plot, etc)
‘Science fiction is a time-sensitive subject in literature,” according to Dr. Beshero-Bondar, Associate Prof. of English, University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg. “Usually futuristic, science fiction speculates about alternative ways of life made possible by technological change.”
Two science fiction short stories, Ray Bradbury’s ‘A sound of Thunder” and Gloria Skurzynskis’s ‘Nethergrave’ both offer adventures to new and magical worlds with the aid of technology. In “A Sound of Thunder,” a wealthy man named Eckels travels with a couple of his friends. Using time traveler machine, they go back to to the Jurassic period to hunt dinosaurs. He is warned never to wander from from a carefully constructed path since any interference with the past could change history forever. In ‘Nethergrave’ the main character Jeremy escapes his miserable daily life by using his high-tech computer to chat with his online friends. All of them lie about who they really are.. They mostly live in a fictional world where they are who they want to be. In the ‘Nethergrave’ he is able to ‘physically’ go into ‘the other world’ as an avatar. He becomes a jaguar and is able to experience events living as the animal.
The characters in “Nethergrave” are easier to relate to than those in “A Sound of Thunder.” Readers could really get to know them and could connect with their feelings. It is also a clearer and more direct tale with modern implications and a more powerful ending. ‘“Nethergrave” speaks to the hearts and experiences of teens and young adults. When kids are bullied at school or ignored by family at home, they turn towards different ways to comfort themselves. One such comfort is online computer chats, websites, and games.
Fewer people can relate to “The Sound of Thunder” it’s so foreign to our day and age. There are more characters to deal with. Multiple situations add complexity and many possible interpretations. Anyone can understand Jeremy’s loneliness and how he takes it to online chat rooms in, “Nethergrave.” Consider the scene when Travis made Eckels go and retrieve the bullets from the monster’s neck? How many people can relate to that?
Sound of Thunder displays a vibrant and fascinating world. But Nethergrave is more focused on character development and deep, universal human connections. and motivation. Jeremy is stuck in the real world, a place where he feels he doesn’t belong. When he gets a chance to leave it, he and jumps at the opportunity.
Both short stories envision a the future in which man will develop advanced programs that can transfer them into a fictional world. Through time travel, past events can be influence in a way that that can affect their future lives. Both stories imagine the possible effects that these advanced programs can have on humanity.
Nethergrave’s theme includes human isolation, in the loneliness of Jeremy. It talks about the problem of escape, spending time in a virtual world rather than the real world. Neglect and bullying can lead some people to spend excessive time chatting online. Who are our real friends when we logs off if internet? Why do people spend so much time online and playing video games? The story shows how someone can get addicted to a game and abandon reality. The story brings readers through the idea of inner struggle and decisions about whether to return to the real world or remain in the game forever.
In the last line of Bradbury’s story, a sound of thunder is heard. The theme of the story shows the pitfalls of misusing technology. Eckels had a goal to hunt a T-Rex, but when he sees the dinosaur, he panics and leaves the path. At this point, he smashes a butterfly. Upon returning to the present with his crew, the men find out everything has changed. To make matters worse, a dangerous dictator has been elected president of the United States, all because he killed a butterfly. The theme of the story is that technology should be treated with the utmost respect not just for man’s careless and prideful indulgence.
I conclusion, science fiction creates alternative worlds with reasonably consistent rules and structures. These are set apart from the regular and familiar world we live in. These two stories show us a glimpse of what may happen if technology gets even more advanced and is misused. Deep looks into human feelings and ideas, through the development of certain characters, gets this point across best.