Analysis Of H.G. Well's "The Time Machine"

874 words - 3 pages

Since the dawn of man, people have been telling stories. As the years progressed, humans developed better and more advanced ways of telling these tales by developing literary devices, such as irony and symbolism, to enhance the experience of the tale. Different genres of stories were developed ranging from Science Fiction to How-To manuals. Since the days of ancient Egypt humans have written these stories down to remember the messages the stories conveyed. In "The Time Machine", H.G. Wells uses symbolism to explore the effects of social Darwinism, capitalism, and socialism on the lives of the people in the future.H.G. Wells, the author of "The Time Machine", was born in Bromley, Kent, in 1866. He died in 1946 in London, England. His parents were of the lower-middle class and served a rich upper class family for much of their lives. He managed to escape this servitude when he was accepted into the Normal School of Science in South Kensington. The inequity of wealth and status between his parents and the people they served could have been a factor in his belief that a system devoid of classes, like communism or socialism, would create an ideal society. Wells is famous for his many books such as The War of the Worlds, The Invisible Man and The Time Machine. Some people say that The Time Machine was the first true Science Fiction book, and that it played an important part in legitimizing Science Fiction as a literary genre (McQuarrie, par. 11).In "The Time Machine" the main character, known only as the Time Traveler, designed and created a time traveling vehicle based on the principle that one could move along the fourth dimension, time, much the same as one could move in the other three dimensions; height, width, and depth. With the time machine he traveled to the year 802,701. In this far distant future, he encountered a race known as the Eloi, evolved from present-day humans. The Eloi, who were roughly four feet in height, passed their time "playing, bathing in the river, making love half playfully, eating fruit, and sleeping" (Hillegas, par. 36) and had an extreme fear of dark places. This seemingly irrational fear led to the discovery of the Morlocks, who were an underground sub-species of man. The Morlocks were the opposite of the Eloi, as they were "crafty subterranean dwellers who resemble giant spiders, their only fear being light" (H.G. Wells: Time Machine, par. 2). The Time Traveler learned that the Morlocks provided clothing and other goods to keep the Eloi happy and content as the Morlocks raised the Eloi for eating, like today's livestock. After retrieving his time...

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