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By the Waters of Babylon vs. There Will Come Soft Rains

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Science-fiction stories on technology taking a violent turn are very common. Technology of the future is one of the most thought about topics in any modern society. In “There Will Come Soft Rains”, by author Ray Bradbury, and “By the Waters of Babylon”, by author S.V. Benẻt, the main theme is the danger of technology, but both have several differences. In the science-fiction story “There Will Come Soft Rains”, Ray Bradbury, one of the worlds most celebrated sci-fi and fantasy writers, describes the realistic possibility of people being wiped out by technology. In his story, he creates a setting in a “smart house” that carries out the daily chores, such as cooking, cleaning, and other things mankind does. The only problem in this robot houses routine is that there are no people to please with its services, so all its hard work basically goes to waste, because humanity, at this point, has been destroyed. In contrast, another science-fiction story “By the Waters of Babylon”, S.V Benẻt, known as an American poet, produces a story about a young man who is the son of a monk in a primitive village far away from even the slightest idea of modern technological advances.

In this story, the boy embarks on a quest to the “Place of the Gods”, which is actually New York City in a post-mortem state. There, the boy discovers that technology was all that remained there after “…fire fell out of the sky” (p 318), meaning it was a bomb that destroyed the city, and it amazed him. After seeing this technology that was new to him, he concluded to himself that even his own tribe people were capable of creating and using similar advances, not realizing that it was this that caused the destruction in the first place. These two stories have a couple of things in common. First, both authors focus their stories around the possible dangers of technology, and their destruction causes similar outcomes. Also, both are set in a time passed or near 2026. Lastly, both stories are similar in the pre-happenings. Prior to each story’s beginning, the reader would assume that there was some sort of atomic bomb that wiped out civilization, or perhaps a nuclear war had been at fault. In conclusion, although both stories are contrasting in several ways, they are similar also. These two authors’ overall message is almost the same; both discuss or hint toward the threats and dangers of our futures technology.

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