Science Fiction Film Comparison
In the world of science fiction, anything and everything that is imagined is possible. Aliens can travel across the galaxies and come to the earth and be aggressive or friendly depending upon the story being told. As fantastic as these works are, within even the most bizarre scenarios there is a grain of realism. Some pieces of science fiction, whether written literature, television, or films, have inspired real-world scientific progress. Communication and information sharing are just two examples of such advancements. hen examining two different science fiction films, The Day the Earth Stood Still from 1951 and I, Robot from 2004 show how the fictitious can inspire real-world technologies and technological advancements. Looking at these two movies, it can be noted how these fantastic works have inspired science, scientists, and the development of robots.
In the film The Day the Earth Stood Still a peaceful alien…… [Read More]
Audiences and their equipment and expectations have changed, too. Many have DVs, streaming video, portable television, and certainly hi-def or plasma sets. Therefore, not only do they expect higher quality programming and effects, but network scheduling is now a moot point. Audiences can also engage in repeat viewings, watching and analyzing more attentively, which leads producers to create "increasingly sophisticated narrative worlds that sustain and reward intensive fan involvement on a variety of levels, a process particularly appropriate to the complex narrative worlds associated with SFTV series ranging from Star Trek to The X-Files to more recent shows such as Heroes and the remake of Battlestar Galactica (Telotte, 2008, 303).
Executives and media scholars believe the current state of television has reached a "tipping" point and the future of viewing and programming may evolve in a number of exciting, highly technological, and active audience involvement. From The Twilight Zone to…… [Read More]
Science Fiction Films
On September 11, 2001, many people reacted to the news reports as if these were advertisements for another Hollywood blockbuster like Independence Day. All of it seemed like a movie, including a scene with the WASP president addressing the nation in a moment of maximum danger. Not since December 7, 1941 had Americans felt so threatened on their own soil, although in general they had been spared the worst horrors of the 20th Century that so many other countries had experienced. This time, however, the movie was real and the outcome was not necessarily going to turn out like a Hollywood ending. Science fiction films like Blade Runner (1982) and The Matrix (1999) had certainly reflected various strains of fear, anxiety and paranoia in American culture and society. So had the bug-eyed monster (BEM) movies of the 1950s and 1960s, when nuclear war seemed a very likely…… [Read More]
SCIENCE FICTION & FEMINISM
Sci-Fi & Feminism
Origins & Evolution of Science Fiction
As with most things including literature, science fiction has progressed and changed a lot over the years. Many works of science fiction were simply rough copies and following the altready-established patterns of prior authors. However, there has always been authors and creators that push the envelope and forge new questions and storylines that have not been realized or conceptualized before. As it relates to science fiction, this started in earnest in the late 19th and early 20th century.
19th and early 20th Century
Given the amount of time that has passed since then, the science fiction visionaries of the 19th century are well-known to anyone that studies or follows the subject. Perhaps the most well-known name was that of Mary Shelley and her work Frankenstein as published in 1818. Many, but not all, people who are scholars…… [Read More]
Science Fiction Novel: The Neuromancer, By William Gibson
William Gibson's The Neuromancer is particularly important for the relationship it depicts between science and society. The novel, published in 1984, is prescient in the fact that it portrays a world in which the most powerful proponents of technology are not the governments, but rather corporate entities driven by conventional notions of greed and self-serving hegemony (which are the same impetuses for most governments, interestingly enough). Yet there is a degree of relevance in this aspect of the novel that reverberates in contemporary society, particularly in light of today's economic crisis and illustrations of socio-economic abuse by corporations such as Enron. Quite simply, the degree of autonomy and influence that corporations are able to exact today are not possible without government intervention and aid. In Gibson's novel this process is alluded to the point of extremity, with corporations directly in control of…… [Read More]
science fiction novel: Philip K. Dick, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
The most interesting facet of Philip Dick's novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, is its depiction of humanity and several crucial tenets that help to define it. Within the novel, humanity is akin to empathy, since one of the primary distinctions between the people and androids in it is that the former are capable of and the latter incapable of empathy. Yet what the novel ultimately alludes to is that human need to feel and express a range of emotions, something that most of the humans are not able to do, choosing to substitute honest emotion with pre-determined, synthesized ones.
This conflict of attempting to transcend limited emotions to the full range of emotions, which is the ultimate expression of humanity, is demonstrated by the characterization of Rick Deckard. Deckard -- whose job is to hunt androids…… [Read More]
In Mattapoisett, gender and ethnicity are not issues, there are no gender roles, men and women share all the work, and men are actually about to suckle the young, while women work in the fields and fight wars. Because there are no gender roles, love is shared by anyone who respect each other, in other words no one classed as homosexual or heterosexual, there are no boundaries concerning love.
Mattapoisett is self-sufficient, has no excess noise, infectious diseases, or pollution, and everything is recycled. Yet, this utopian society is not the only society that exists, for the pers must deal with a dystopian society, one that Piercy uses to portray the outcome for today's society if it continues unchecked. For it will be one of waste, pollution, violence, patriarchal, and totalitarian. It is basically the negative aspects of today's society magnified. In this dystopian society, every aspect of life is…… [Read More]
His attraction to her is dictated by his own immortal loneliness and the fact that she has sufficient power to destroy him. The danger in her thus calls to the danger in himself.
2. Both Sam in Lord of Light and Doro in Wild Seed function optimally as lone characters as a result of their specific ideology and physiology, respectively. Sam, as part of a crew from a technologically advanced space ship, chooses not to use the power of technology in the same way as his fellow earthlings. Instead he separates himself from them by becoming a champion of the oppressed masses. Thus his interaction with the aliens is more successful than his group consciousness in terms of his own people. Doro on the other hand is completely separated from humanity in that he is their killer. He thus is naturally alone and can come close to humanity only when…… [Read More]
They are encountered in the workplace, in the home, in every facet of life. omen have made advances toward the equality they seek only to encounter a backlash in the form of religious fundamentalism, claims of reverse discrimination by males, and hostility from a public that thinks the women's movement has won everything it wanted and should thus now be silent. Both the needs of women today and the backlash that has developed derive from the changes in social and sexual roles that have taken place in the period since orld ar II.
It would be a mistake to see changing gender roles in society as threatening only to the males who dominate that society. Such changes also threaten many women who have accepted a more traditional role and who see any change as a threat. This response is not new. hen women first agitated for the vote at the…… [Read More]
science fiction text analysis a science fiction story I send email. The followings included analysis. 1. Conven
There is little doubt that Adam Marek's "Without a Shell" is a story that belongs to the category of literature known as science fiction. The tale adheres to many conventions of this particular genre. One of the chief elements of many science fiction tales is the fact that they take place in the future. This story certainly takes place in the future, as denoted by the fact that it is called "futuristic" by Dr. Vino Dhanak. Moreover, the very nature of the plot of this tale revolves about scientific processes -- which is another hallmark of science fiction stories. The primary basis for this tale is that in the future, there are children who are wearing protective suits (designed for the military) that allow them to heal wounds at an exceedingly rapid rate.…… [Read More]
Masculinism in Science Fiction
Science fiction has always been a masculine genre, no matter that Mary Shelley invented it in her novel Frankenstein. Until fairly recent times, most science fiction writers were men, and they dealt with subjects like technology, power, space battles, featuring male heroes, explorers and adventurers. In film, science fiction has been a perfect subject for ultra-masculine actors like Arnold Schwarzenegger, although Lieutenant Ripley in the Alien trilogy proved that women could be masculine heroes as well and very effective at destroying hostile creatures that threaten humanity. Joe Haldeman's novel Forever Peace certainly fits within this conventional masculine narrative in science fiction, since the story is related by a male narrator named Sergeant Julian Class, an alienated soldier of the First orld who opposes his own government and society. He is a class type of alienated and disillusioned male hero who nevertheless hopes that the world can…… [Read More]
Evolution in Science Fiction
The idea of evolution is an inevitable process that any "living" being undergoes in order to adapt and survive in one's environment. Charles Darwin's "survival of the fittest" theory in evolution becomes a major thematic display within the world of science fiction. By analyzing Steven Johnson's "The Myth of the Ant Queen," one can increase one's comprehension regarding science fiction writing and the aspect of evolution.
Johnson's "The Myth of the Ant Queen" takes a brief look at the civilized and organized structure of the ant society and compares it to the hustle and bustle of New York City's subway system. But this comparison is not the only theme found within Johnson's short essay. In fact, one can see where evolution plays a part regarding the ant society. The essay describes the movements and tasks of the harvester ants and debunks the "myth" that the general…… [Read More]
What is Science Fiction?
Nightfall (Asimov, 1941)
Q1. What is different about the world of the story from the “normal” world? What elements make the world of the story seem strange and different from our own?
There are a number of elements in Nightfall that establish the planet’s difference from the normal world on earth. First, it is set on another planet, in a fictional universe. This universe is lighted by several, rather than one sun such as in our solar system. It is a place where there is endless daylight, and nightfall of any kind is viewed as catastrophic. The idea of night descending upon the planet is viewed as something conducive to mass hysteria and madness, and must be hidden from by the population of the planets’ citizens, like an end-of-the-world scenario.
Q2. What are the ways in which the author uses language that are characteristic of SF?…… [Read More]
The massive mollusks still do seem fantastical. Several of the irrational elements of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea seemed more outrageous in the 19th century they do now. However, the novel continues to encapsulate the fantasy and science fiction genres because of its willingness to expand the boundary of what is real. Interestingly, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea did not stretch those boundaries much further than hard science has.
On the other hand, novels such as the ones in the Twilight series are more squarely fantastical. Barring any major scientific discoveries, vampires and shape-shifters simply do not exist. Such elements of the absolutely impossible serve various literary functions. For instance, in New Moon Stephanie Meyer uses vampires and shape-shifters to develop the central character, a human being. As in Frankenstein, the impossible becomes the best means to explore human motivations, dreams, desires, and weaknesses.
Moreover, the fantasy elements are not…… [Read More]
Sci-Fi Art Analysis
The class text makes two passing references to Star Trek. ith that in mind, the author of this report will focus on the show Star Trek: The Next Generation. Although rather dated, much of the material and imagery used in the show is very good even by today's standards. The show ran from 1987 to 1994, seven seasons in total. The show was a brilliant piece of art both in terms of the subject matter they covered as well as the manner in which it was presented in terms of color, presentation, concepts and ideas. The show is rated a very high 8.7 on the International Movie Database (IMDb) website (IMDb). This brief report shall cover some aspects of the show, what made the show so good and the adeptness in which they blended the script, the imagery and the characters into a cohesive storyline. hile Star…… [Read More]
For example, towards the end of Falling Free Van Atta finds an old memo in his e-mail with orders to kill the Quaddies: "Item: Post-fetal experimental tissue cultures. Quantity: 1,000. Disposition: cremation by IGS standard biolab rules" (p. 293). Van Atta notices that the order came from "General Accounting and Inventory Control" and was signed by "some unknown middle manager in the GA& IC back on Earth." Van Atta says, "I don't think this twit even knows what Quaddies are." Similarly, non-sensical orders come down all the time in the military, which is organized along corporate lines, from people who know nothing about local situations.
In a large corporation it is difficult to affix moral responsibility on individuals. When scandals erupt (Enron, for example), the CEO will claim he didn't know anything about what was going on. Employees lower in the hierarchy need their incomes, and they may be reluctant…… [Read More]
Science Fiction Stories -- Comparisons / Contrasts
all-E & Blade Runner -- Utopia vs. Dystopia
The two well-known science fiction films that are critiqued in this paper -- all-E and Blade Runner -- will be critiqued and contrasted as to the following dichotomies: utopia and dystopia; technophobia and technophilia; and futurity and nostalgia. Thesis: these films both delve into the potentially disastrous environmental future for the planet, and each in its own way provides an alternative future.
all-E and Utopia: This ravaged planet is no utopia in the traditional sense, for sure, but all-E has evolved over the past 700 years; some kind of mutation perhaps is what has allowed him to survive in a highly radioactive environment. To survive alone with the exception of a cockroach (which is one of the few species that can survive horrendous polluting events like radiation) is proof of his survivability. After all, utopia…… [Read More]
Legend' is a sci-fi thriller about a New York scientist who is abandoned in Manhattan in the year 2012. This one hour 40 minutes movie stars Will Smith and Alice Braga with Francis Lawrence as its director the movie is rated at PG-13 for violence. The movie offers a stunning view of how the city as the world knows it today, might look in 2012 if in the event it were abandoned in 2009.
Going back in trivia, this is the third adaption of the ichard Matheson's 1954 novel, originally in the film it was vampires instead of zombies. Such movies are always inspired by our fears and hence hold special interest, especially if it's a scientist abandoned in New York struggling to survive a virus that turns humans into flesh-eating mechanical looking zombies.
If we go through its adaptations, the first time the novel was turned into a movie…… [Read More]
Godzilla (1954) was the original science fiction class that inspired a large number of sequels over the next twenty years, and as usual with this genre reflected contemporary Cold War fears and anxieties about nuclear weapons. In this case, hydrogen bomb tests is the Pacific created a radioactive dinosaur that made its way bad to Japan and destroyed okyo. Japan's cities had been firebombed into destruction during World War II, and it was the only country in history to ever experience a nuclear attack -- just nine years before this film was made -- so the idea that some prehistoric monster might devastate the country had a special relevance there. In the 1950s, of course, there were many science fiction films about radioactive monsters, such as the giant ants in hem or the dinosaur that attacked London in Behemoth, so the symbolism of these mutations destroying the world was commonplace.…… [Read More]
hile the system is not exactly the same as that described in e, the result is much more dramatic, since a far greater number of Americans are disenfranchised.
As I mentioned above, e was not the first dystopian work that I encountered. However, it was the first dystopian work that I encountered, for the first time, in a post 9-11 world. hat shocked me was not how far OneState was from modern American society, but the startling similarities that the two share. hile modern life is not strictly limited in by tables and graphs, personal liberties have been restricted at an alarming rate. This is not mitigated by the fact that the trend in the last 75 years had been an increase in personal liberties. A free society is characterized by an expansion of civil liberties. For example, most democracies begin with powerful males having the right to vote, and…… [Read More]
Octavia Butler's novel Parable of the Sower depicts an America that has crumbled into complete chaos and disarray. ithin the dystopia of 2024, Lauren Olamina reflects on her family background and her past in order to help create a more ideal future for humanity. The key to the future is liberation, both personal and political. Therefore, the message of Parable of the Sower is revolutionary. Lauren does not just need to be a true leader; she needs to change what it means to be human. Butler reportedly said about the potential for female heroines to create a utopian society out of the ashes of the patriarchal dystopia: "I don't believe that imperfect humans can form a perfect society," (Zaki 239). Butler does not expect Lauren and the Earthseed community to become a Utopia because no matter how revolutionary and idealistic she might be, Lauren remains constrained by her past and…… [Read More]
Cocoon (Howard, 1985) is a 1985 Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre film directed by Ron Howard, who previously directed such films as Splash and Night Shift. Benefitting from the kindly type of aliens previously seen in E.T.: The Extraterrestrial and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Cocoon used the advanced technologies of benevolent aliens to explore aging and the pros/cons of reversing that process. Aided by a veteran cast and superior editing/special effects, Cocoon became a hit film.
General Theme/Overview, Style, Plot and Character Development
The general theme is the exploration of aging and the pros/cons of reversing the process, using the style of Sci-Fi/Fantasy. The plot involves the extraordinary results of humans interacting with kindly, advanced aliens, and the dilemmas caused by those results. Thousands of years ago, aliens from Antarea lived on the island of Atlantis on Earth. The island sank and 20 Antareans stayed behind so other Antareans would have…… [Read More]
Emiko and the New People present some of the most poignant imagery in Paolo Bacigalupi's novel The Windup Girl. The titular character also emerges as a clear but ironic hero, providing a striking science fiction framework with which to view social and political realities. Emiko is an ironic hero because she is not human; she is a windup girl. She shares much in common with other quasi-human characters or species that people the canon of science fiction. Yet she is no android. Her modifications do imbue Emiko with android-like features. Because the New People are genetically engineered, they have sufficient human characteristics to make people like Emiko endowed with full emotional, sexual and spiritual energy. Most importantly, the New People are outsiders, outcastes, and Others.
Although the windup girl herself is the most striking feature, lending herself to the book's title, The Windup Girl certainly possesses all the features…… [Read More]
Both the Lovely Bones and Belle Prater's Boy could be very effective in teaching a Social Sciences course on the loss of a family member, and the effect that this has both on the family and the larger community. The sense of identity for the adolescent characters in these books is an essential element and conflict in the story. Family, especially at this age and developmental stage, is essential to the concept of the self. These books both explore the ways in which identity can be disrupted by familial dysfunction, and suggest real ways in which to overcome such disruptions -- as well as the effects of failing to do so.
One of the primary ways that Ruth White achieves a sense of verisimilitude in Belle Prater's Boy is through the use of dialect. There are many mundane events that take place that also lend the story a…… [Read More]
That is not to say that theory and application cannot be separated into ethical categories. They can be, but those categorizations are always going to be somewhat skewed by the researcher, because no human being is capable of perfect neutrality. To assume that one can research for the sake of purse science really does involve imaging that scientists are not human beings with their own personal motivations. Moreover, this is not an issue that developed in the post-atomic world. Even before the use of the atomic bomb, scientists were motivated by personal motivations that kept them from being completely neutral. Therefore, it might be better to consider the ethics of scientific discovery from a viewpoint that includes the inherent morality of a discovery. For example, chemotherapy could be used as a weapon with very disastrous results, because its side-effects are devastating and can even be fatal. However, chemotherapies are developed…… [Read More]
Samuel R. Delany's novel, Tales of Neveryon depicts a society where the monetary system is highly eroticized. Slavery is eroticized, and human sexuality becomes a commodity that can be bought and sold with the purchase of a slave. The story of the Rublyn culture reveals that inter-gender and inter-class relationships are closely impacted by a change from the barter to a monetary system, as women begin to choose males with money, rather than choosing males with which they can live harmoniously. Eroticizing slavery, class relations, and economic exchange has an important impact on society, as shown within Tales of Neveryon. In Delany's book, sexuality becomes intimately tied to ownership and economics, and individuals lose the ability to love freely.
Tales of Neveryon is part of a larger series, which includes the titles Tales of Neveryon, Neveryona, Flight from Neveryon, Return to Neveryon, and The Bridge of Lost Desire.…… [Read More]
Allen is saying that all of the wonders of technology can never replace tow people connecting and trusting each other. I completely agree with these concepts and given Mr. Allen's wit and comedic sense, am thankful it was made. Finally any film made during a specific period of time can't help but reflect the values of society at the time. The open discussions about sexuality and sex make light of society's open and free attitudes about these areas of the human experience in 1973.
Why Sleeper is a Classic
Sleeper will always be a classic because it combines Mr. Allen's slapstick and vaudevillian comedic approaches while integrating his favorite music, which is jazz and ragtime. In addition the triumph of the human spirit and human emotions, as chaotic and mercurial as they can be, will always be superior to technology. The use of technology as a means to coerce and…… [Read More]
Life Science Current Event eport
Current Events on Cloning and Evolution
Topic and Date: The Ethics of Egg Manipulation (Evolution), August 27, 2009
The article "The Ethics of Egg Manipulation" published in Nature investigates the research challenges in reducing diseases that can be identified prior to egg fertilization. Scientists have questioned if it is necessary for humans to give birth to offspring that are at high risk for genetic diseases. Their hypothesis is: If we remove the bad parts of the DNA from one egg and replace it with good DNA from another egg and use the new egg for in vitro fertilization, can we reduce the number of babies born with disease (Anonymous, 2009)?
Current experiments have been performed on monkeys. The experiments have been successful and scientists believe the research is ready to move to humans, but many laws are in place to deter this type of…… [Read More]
computers in space science. Specifically, it will look at the roles computers have in current space technology and how they have effected the lives of everyone in the world. Without computer technology, space science would be confined to the ground, and man's imagination. efore large-scale computing was developed, the technologies necessary to design, build, and maintain a space program simply did not exist. Computers have made it possible to explore the moon, stars, and beyond.
Computers in Space Science
Computers play an integral role in the science of space, and without them most of modern space exploration would not be possible. As the NASA report, "Computers at NASA" states, "Since the 1950's, the computer has been the main tool that has enabled scientists and engineers to visualize the next frontier and then make it a reality" (NASA). NASA employs literally thousands of computers throughout the world to monitor, design, and…… [Read More]
Food security is a critical issue for any food & beverage company. It is self-evident that food is the business for such a company, so any macro-level issue regarding food is inherently important, but there are specific considerations that drive the relevance of food security.
First, food security reflects on the long-run sustainability of the business. It may sound silly to say it, but food companies need food in order to survive. They need to grow it, process it, package it and sell it. So at the supply chain level, threats to food security need to be taken seriously. The world today is just now starting to legitimately look like a zero sum game with respect to many resources, food being one. If the world needs to produce much more food than what has been produced in the past, but as much as a quarter of agriculture land is already…… [Read More]
Invisible Man by H.G. Wells
Character Analysis: Griffin and Kemp
The science fiction novel written by H.G. Wells called the Invisible Man is written about a talented scientist who is something of a rogue researcher. He represents a person who believes more so in the scientific methods than in humanity. These character traits are fully illustrated throughout the plot as Griffin undertakes many questionable activities. When Griffin was studying at the University of London he had a colleague named Dr. Kemp who has roughly an equal intelligence, yet some quite different character traits. Kemp also has a vast appreciation for science and the scientific method but these interests are utilized in efforts to help humanity progress and not necessarily for personal gain. This analysis will compare and contrast how the two individuals could have vastly different outlooks on life despite the fact that they both fully embrace and appreciate the…… [Read More]
Fiction ~ Harry Potter
a) riefly outline where the person was born and raised and the nature of his childhood experience.
orn in Godric's Hollow, England to James and Lily Potter
Raised by Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia Dursley alongside cousin Dudley. Was treated badly during the first eleven years of his life, including being forced into slave labor and being the subject of constant neglect.
b) Explain the person's life before and after his "life altering event."
efore the life altering event, Harry was miserable. He was forced to live in a cupboard under the stairs, had no friends, and was not allowed any kind of warmth or happiness. After, he was invited into a world where he could be loved and appreciated for who he is. He goes from being minimized in importance to one of the most important people within his society.
c) riefly explain what the…… [Read More]
All without distinction were branded as fanatics and phantasts; not only those, whose wild and exorbitant imaginations had actually engendered only extravagant and grotesque phantasms, and whose productions were, for the most part, poor copies and gross caricatures of genuine inspiration; but the truly inspired likewise, the originals themselves. And this for no other reason, but because they were the unlearned, men of humble and obscure occupations. (Coleridge iographia IX)
To a certain extent, Coleridge's polemical point here is consistent with his early radical politics, and his emergence from the lively intellectual community of London's "dissenting academies" at a time when religious non-conformists (like the Unitarian Coleridge) were not permitted to attend Oxford or Cambridge: he is correct that science and philosophy were more active among "humble and obscure" persons, like Joseph Priestley or Anna Letitia arbauld, who had emerged from the dissenting academies because barred (by religion or gender)…… [Read More]
science teacher, I wanted to select a non-fiction reader on a topic of interest to me, and one with which I could share my love of science with students. I chose Remarkable Rocks by Ron Cole. I thought the students would enjoy seeing my rock collection, which I brought in as part of the lesson. The students had an opportunity to observe and sort rocks and use information they gleaned from the book to label them. I expected that the lesson would have strong appeal to the students because of the hands-on activities. They could easily identify the purpose for reading and I expected that they would be engaged from the beginning.
One student in the class, Justin, does not have any diagnosed disabilities, but he is considered a struggling reader. The at-risk benchmark for 6th grade students is 40 words per minute. Justin reads at this level and is…… [Read More]
Otherness" Quality of Gothic Fiction
Otherness in Wapole and Lewis
The construct of otherness is represented in Gothic fiction in three primary ways: (1) An underlying emphasis on the supernatural is a strong platform to presenting a sense of the other to readers. (2) Moreover, women are portrayed in a manner that characterizes them as being very different from men. (3) The behavior of the characters and the situations in which they find themselves and put themselves is profoundly different from the quotidian experiences of the readers, thereby imparting a separation between fiction and real life that comfortably maintains the characters in some kind of otherland.
The "Otherness" of the Supernatural
With his 1764 writing of the novel The Castle of Otranto, Horace Wapole is said to have invented the Gothic novel genre -- a classification that relies heavily on representation of the supernatural. In the minds of contemporary readers,…… [Read More]
This lesson would itself actually consist of several smaller lessons in order to incorporate all tasks and provide proper room for learning and absorption. This extended time period will also assist learners in making greater strides with the multimedia technology they have available, which as a dynamic setting and experiential means of expression and communication requires time to allow for repositioning and reanalysis (Gonzalez et al., 2000). By progressing in segments, leaners will come full circle form an examination of how alien history can be to how similar the technologies of the period in question are to certain technologies of today, despite the substantial and unquestionable differences. Lesson objectives include an improved understanding of communication technology and its importance in all times, societies, and civilizations; an ability to make connections between historic technologies and capabilities and those that exist today, the ability to work effectively in groups, the ability to…… [Read More]
"Some Enemies of Science" J.B.S. Haldane
The vivisection debate: J.B.S. Haldane's "Some enemies of science"
The vivisection debate is an old one. As early as 1928, the scientist J.B.S. Haldane rigorously defended the practice of vivisection against its earliest detractors, arguing that even moderate government regulation of scientific behavior to protect animal rights was hypocritical, given the way that animals were treated in other spheres of human life. In contrast, David Suzuki's 1989 essay "The pain of animals" highlights the central paradox of animal experimentation. On one hand, animal experiments are only useful because of our biological similarities to animals. On the other hand, we assert our right to exploit animals based upon our inherent differences from them. The intelligence of animals such as the chimpanzee is analogous to a two-year-old child and yet through logical sleight of hand we justify using chimps in the laboratory by calling them…… [Read More]
Truth in Fiction
"Live by the harmless untruths that make you brave and kind and healthy and happy."
-- Kurt Vonnegut
"Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language."
In an influential article on the concept of truth in scientific language, Polish logician and mathematician lfred Tarski advanced a detailed analysis of what constitutes a "true sentence" (Tarski, 1933). ccording to Tarski's semantic theory of truth, a proposition is true if and only if it states what is the case. For example, the statement, "The cat is on the mat," is true if and only if there is a real cat on an actual mat. Tarski's concern for precise criteria for determining the truth-value of sentences came out of a project to give rigorous definitions of truth in scientific discourse (Hodges, 2010).
t a more general level, logicians and philosophers have argued…… [Read More]
Science fiction frequently portrays a dystopian reality to demonstrate the faults and failings in human nature or in human societies. Technology becomes an extension of human nature, enabling people to abuse or exploit. In William Gibson's novel Neuromancer, the author offers a bleak portrayal of the ways human beings use technology. Humans interface with technology in a way that obliterates their ability to relate to one another or experience emotions like compassion and empathy. The protagonist Henry Case is an exception, which is why the audience can relate to the ways he tries to subvert the system. A matrix supersedes human collective consciousness, and artificially intelligent systems can even stave off death. In the world of the Neuromancer, individual human beings can even upload their own personal memories and experiences to preserve them. In Neuromancer, Gibson’s shows that because human beings create technology, all outgrowths of technology are essentially outgrowths…… [Read More]
Smith notes that it may be impossible to unequivocally prove something with one hundred percent accuracy; rather, scientists seek probability.
The term theory is often misconstrued: Smith states that "theories always explain facts." Moreover, there is no clear demarcation between a theory and a hypothesis. Theories are basically broad hypotheses. Laws, on the other hand, are more restrictive and are often derived from theories. The practice of science entails experimentation as well as presentation to the scientific community. When the research is presented to other scientists, it is usually done so through peer-reviewed journals. Often other scientists will critique and critically evaluate the scientific experiment and attempt to replicate it. When the experiment has been replicated the hypothesis may become part of the canon of established science and from there, common knowledge.
Because science can only deal with what is observable and measurable, it can not apply to philosophy, aesthetics,…… [Read More]
But perhaps the most dramatic deviation between the fan fiction and the actual Potter books is the seriousness and lack of humor in the fan fiction. The Harry Potter novels were notable for their magic candy, broomsticks, spells and other forms of levity that lightened some of the serious issues pertaining to death, curses, prophesy, and an emerging adult awareness of the characters. Rowling often used a very ironic tone in the dialogue and in her authorial voice. This Potter fan fiction has a modernist, almost Hemingway-like style as it quickly moves from year to year in somber, spare sentences, talking about Harry's grief regarding his circumstances and the death which magic has caused. Harry is clearly finding himself as a person, and the focus of the fan fiction is more internal than external.
It is difficult to imagine Rowling's books having had such a hold upon the imagination of…… [Read More]
Darwinism and the Standard Social Science Model
If the Standard Social Science Model is mistaken, then we are less altruistic than would otherwise be the case'.
Put another way, the same statement could read, "If culture is not the underlying cause of human behavior, then human beings are more selfish than they would be if culture were the underlying cause of human behavior." An evaluation of this statement rests not only on an assessment of the truth of each part, but also on the relationship between the two parts of the claim. Is having A (a false presumption put forth by the SSSM) the condition for having B (self-centered human beings)? Let us investigate the premise as well as the argument.
The Standard Social Science Model claims that "only genetically determined human behavior is 'natural' or biological" (Zimmer, 1.) This means that when an infant pulls away from fire, or…… [Read More]
political representation of African-Americans in the southern United States. The author explores many different theories as well as the ideas of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King to explore the under presentation of Blacks politically. There were eight sources used to complete this paper.
African-Americans have come a long way since the nation's inception. From the days of slavery, to the present time many bridges have been crossed and many battles have been won. Gone are the days that Blacks were required to sit at the back of the bus.
No longer can Blacks be told they must eat at a certain restaurant. Black and white children go to school together daily, they grow up on the same streets and they marry into each other's race with increasing frequency. It is becoming the America that the founding fathers envisioned at the time the nation was created. One of the reasons…… [Read More]
Fact or Fiction
Global arming is a controversial topic largely because of its sprawling prediction of worldwide catastrophe, an image which is far exaggerated from the reality of global climate change. If it were to be a more subtle phenomenon, say an increase in cloud cover, or more sunny days in February, then people would not pay any attention to the matter and would go on living their carefree lives. This is not the reality however, as science predicts massive changes to the way all of humanity will have to live due to climate change. Some may scoff at this allegation, and some may seriously change their habits in fear of the future. For the sake of comparison, I will present global warming believers, and global warming deniers and will analyze the motivations for each side to stretch its influence, whether in the political realm or…… [Read More]
Global Warming: Fact ather Than Fiction
The focus of this paper is on global warming and its causes. In the introduction phase, we have given a brief overview of the problem alongside a brief look at the details of the problem itself. It is mentioned here that how much change has actually recorded in the previous decades and what the future might hold on for the planet if the trend keeps on going as it is right now. It has also mentioned the consequences of rise in temperatures which can result in many different scenarios.
We then focused on the causes of the problem and again had a brief overview of it, the causes were divided into two main sections and proper emphasis was given on one of it in order to give the root cause of the phenomena. The discussion phase have a more in-depth look at the causes…… [Read More]
Specifically, it has risen a full degree since 1957 (Crittenden & White, 2010; Muller, 2008). Similarly, there is no doubt that carbon dioxide levels have also risen significantly, thirty-six percent since their first recording (Muller, 2008). Proponents of the global warming hypothesis argue that this increasing level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is a cause of the greenhouse effect that traps warmth under the lower layers of the atmosphere and increases severe weather patterns and weather instability in general (Crittenden & White, 2010).
In many respects, the principle flaw in the global warming theory is not so much that it is illusory but that it is not necessarily harmful and also, not necessarily attributable to human behavior. The most responsible proponents of global warming acknowledge both of those uncertainties but argue that if the observed evidence is significantly related to global warming, and if global warming is the cause…… [Read More]
Science fiction and horror both offer narrative closure and "the restoration of the social order," as does Repo Men, only in this case the social order being preserved is completely amoral and evil (Grant 21). It does not end with the monster or alien menace defeated, like Independence Day, Star ars, Terminator or The ar of the orlds, but just a literal return to the
status quo and business as usual. Repo Men is definitely not an adolescent or 'infantilized' film, with heavy reliance on special effects and light and magic shows, nor do the good guys win in the end -- insofar as there are any good guys at all. It has no real hope or comport to offer, and n this absolutely dehumanized world of the future that lacks redeeming features of any kind, Remy's fantasy existence might actually be preferable to 'reality'. Thus the film is…… [Read More]
Women Science Fiction Writers as Probing Pathfinders
Author Marge Piercy's Woman on the Edge of Time was written in 1976, and it has received critical acclaim for the science fiction future it depicts, but it was likely given literary wings by a bizarre science fiction tale written in 1818, according to a scholarly essay in Critique: Studies in contemporary Fiction (Seabury, 2001). The science fiction tale Seabury alludes to is in fact "often called the first work of science fiction," and that is the classic story of Frankenstein.
Additionally, Seabury uses a quote to tip the cap to Frankenstein's author, Mary Shelley, who, in penning Frankenstein, has written "perhaps the single most influential work of science fiction by a woman." And so, in the genre of feminist science fiction, even though Frankenstein is quite the opposite of feminine, to say the least, the author was clearly a pathfinder of tremendous…… [Read More]
limate change, income disparity, terminal illnesses and continued wars all plague our world. The means by which we typically understand such phenomenon is through science. We have created vast canons of academic texts in fields like psychology, sociology, and other social sciences. Even politics is now "political science." Anything that cannot be codified or empirically researched is not deemed worthy of discussion. It is this over-emphasis on science that creates a boom in fantasy literature.
Fantasy writing is also a "special skill," according to hadbourn (2008). "Being able to see beyond the boundaries of the world around us" requires a different approach to writing than other genres (hadbourn 2008). Many reluctant readers find that fantasy liberates them from the tyranny of science. As the new religion of the world, science demystifies. Many readers find reading mundane because it too closely resembles the predictable world of science.
Of course, not all…… [Read More]
" After effectively damning her to a life as a vampire, Ibrahim, himself abused by the man who made him one of the undead, tries to 'make good' on his promise to himself to help Lina: "Despite the many shortcoming of Ibrahim's moral probity, he had known from the start that he would live his life as a vampire much the same way he had lived his life as a normal human -- trying to be good, even if he failed miserably most of the time." This is, Taylor suggests, not unlike that of a terrorist who rationalizes his conversion of another man (or woman) to the cause, that he is at least trying, and saving the new convert from a worse fate.
Taylor's extended metaphor of Islamic terrorism and fundamentalism and vampirism, of one life as an outsider in real life with life as an outsider in a science…… [Read More]
The existence of people such as the Selenites, who burst whenever they are hit, is such an example, as is the fact that the capsule falls into the water to the bottom of the ocean and is rescued from there (although, in broad lines, this is indeed how things happen nowadays as well, although, at the beginning of the 19th century, this must have certainly belonged to the science fiction genre).
Finally, it is worth pointing out that the movie also involved nature laws that, at that point, belonged to the science fiction. The main such nature law was the law of gravity: at the moment of the movie, there was no perception that gravity could be in fact surpassed and that la launch in space was a possible endeavor for the human race.
Melies work was certainly fundamental for the future evolution of the science fiction genre in cinematography.…… [Read More]
In this case it is a robot the outcast one that has to overcome the misgivings of the world around him. This would become to model of many other robot stories of our time, about the eternal battle between humans and machines, and the myth that humans can create machines powerful enough to destroy them. However the story has a bit of reality in it, since humans do use robots to do the house work. Only that they still haven't created one that would perform all activities together, but design one specific robot for each task. They don't look human-like, perhaps, especially to avoid this kind of emotional conflict between machines and their owners.
The story was written in 1951, when the world's image of robots was much different than it is today. In spite of all the technologic and scientific advances made by that period, in the mid 20th…… [Read More]
Siegel's 1956 film version of The Invasion of the Body Snatchers uses a number of realistic techniques like undistorted camera angles, and shots of mundane activities and locations to establish the rationality and logic of the daytime world of small-town California. As the movie begins to shift into the nightmarish world of the alien invasion, the shots become increasingly distorted, dark and gloomy, showing the slip into the subconscious, emotional existence. Here, the movie begins to adopt a moral stance, as we see that the main characters are truly at their most human as they live through the overt terror and emotion of the night time distortions of logic and reality. It is in the daytime world of logic that they can explain away the loss of their humanity to the aliens, but in the nighttime their humanity is revealed as the emotional, subconscious mess that defines them. As the…… [Read More]
Dominican Fantasies, ritten and Unwritten:
The use of science fiction in the Brief ondrous Life of Oscar ao
Juan Diaz's novel The Brief ondrous Life of Oscar ao details the life of an overweight Dominican boy who has aspirations of being a romantic hero that are continually thwarted by his great size and unattractive physical appearance. However, one of the dominant themes of the book is that appearances can deceive. Despite the fact that he is ugly on the outside, Oscar has a beautiful soul. His inner life is at odds with his outer life. One way in which Oscar deals with this is by escaping into a world of fantasy novels and characters. Diaz's coming-of-age novel is thus very much a book 'about' other books, just as much as it is a book about a man's life. Its postmodern nature is clear in the sense that the novels and…… [Read More]
Clearly, Junot Diaz is using symbolism throughout the novel The rief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, to illustrate how a host of events would shape the kind of person that Oscar would become. This is accomplished by looking at: science fiction and how it helped Oscar to escape. Early on this was used to show the way he dealt with: the sense of isolationism and rejection he felt in when he was growing up. While, at the same time this is intertwined with the conflicts of love and its underlying meanings that are influencing Oscar's behavior. To compare these differences, Diaz will use Yunior to show an alternate reality to that of Oscar's (as he is the story teller of the novel). Once this occurs, this helps to provide insights about: what events shaped Oscar's life and how he used science fiction to escape from reality. This is significant,…… [Read More]
Dreamed of Creating Magic - and He Does
One of my dreams was to grow up and become a magician. ell, that's what happened. I'm not a science fiction writer. I'm a magician. I can use words to make you believe anything." -Ray Bradbury
Ray Bradbury is one of the classic authors of our day- one of the fathers of science fiction. At nearly 82 years old, and over 500 works later, he is still going strong. He is still writing, creating and producing.
Ray Douglas Bradbury was born in aukegan, Illinois on August 22, 1920. He was the third son of Leonard Spaulding Bradbury, a telephone line worker, and Esther Marie Bradbury, a Swedish immigrant. Bradbury credits his mother, with jump-starting his love of fantasy and the supernatural. His mother was fascinated with the new motion pictures. She would sneak Bradbury in with her when he was only two…… [Read More]
..I am with you, and know how it is." Cunningham utilizes this idea of hitman's timelessness to weave him through the narratives that build character in his work. hitman's issues are clearly still timely as his call to question those things that are seen as progress is universal in the developed and developing worlds, alike. Post-modernism is also often though to as post-colonial as the standardization of borders has seemed to stagnate over the last 50 or so years and colonization is conducted in much subtler ways, than were evident in alt's lifetime. Cunningham, no doubt weaves his artistic interpretation of hitman into his works, but it is clear that it is with the careful reader's vision of the subtle and constructionist leanings of hitman. Cunningham's writing is truly an incarnation of the relevance of hitman to the modern context. He utilizes the turn of many an artful phrase to…… [Read More]
Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey is a masterpiece in the science fiction genre. Based on a story by Arthur C. Clarke, the film epitomizes the features of science fiction, including an overarching theme questioning the role of humanity in the universe. The film could just as well be classified as an epic, given its length and breath, as it begins with the origin of human beings through a depiction of evolution from primates, through the story of a space mission occurring millions of years later. Plot practically takes a back seat to cinematography and design in 2001: A Space Odyssey, in which Kubrick employs multiple cinematographic tools including music, mise-en-scene, editing, lighting, design, and script elements.
The mise-en-scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey is simply extraordinary, because each image captures the tension and existential angst that pervades the movie. Because the bulk of the film takes place…… [Read More]
However, this may not have been Diaz's intention at all. He may have simply been trying to emphasize the third person viewpoint and that the reader is merely witnessing the events. This opening statement requires the reader to place themselves in a position somewhere, hovering above the lives of the characters, viewing them from an unattached vantage point. This is much the way in which one views an ant hill. We look at the ant hill and see it as a whole. We may see individual ants going from here to there. We have no idea what is going on in the heads of the individual ants. We do not know where they intend to go, but we see them scurrying about on the way to something that is apparently important to them. At that point, we can either choose to focus in one a single ant and follow its…… [Read More]
Blade Runner: Genre, Conflict and Ambiguities
The conflict at the heart of Blade Runner is like that in most noir, neo-noir and detective films -- a fight between good and evil. In Blade Runner, this conflict is particularly compelling because the distinction between these two forces is ambiguous at best. The film uses the man vs. monster motif put forward in Shelley's gothic masterpiece Frankenstein (in Blade Runner it is updated to man vs. machine to fit the futuristic setting), and this motif allows the film to explore the question of what makes us human, intelligent, sentient, and mortal. The film's underlying philosophical tone is not used in a pedantic manner but rather to elicit sympathy for the film's most interesting characters -- the replicants themselves -- as well as the individuals responsible for creating them and destroying them. The hero of the film, Deckard, is one of the latter…… [Read More]