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Atomic bonb - Essay Example

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Science Fiction and the fear of Apocalypse Your Name Name of of Professor Science Fiction and the fear of Apocalypse Science fiction has always been a channel for filmmakers and audiences to channelize their anxieties regarding apocalypse that may result out of the actions of human beings…
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Download file to see previous pages They placed the onus on the prevention of apocalypse on mankind. This was then seen as a reclamation of agency on the part of a beleaguered species which felt that it was doomed as a result of the inexorable progress of science and technology. The world wars made it clear to man that science was something that could be used for causing unimaginable misery on mankind. The atomic bombs that were dropped in Hiroshima and Nagasaki proved to even those who were not directly affected by the destruction the power of such bombs. There was thus, a fear of atomic power as something that could trigger off apocalypse or the end of mankind as a species. This fear was then expressed through movies such as The Day the Earth Caught Fire and The Day the Earth Stood Still. These movies were made in the wake of the world wars and the effect of these wars and the incredible human loss that they caused can be seen in them. The Day the Earth Caught Fire was a movie that was released in 1961 and it was directed by Val Guest. The movie narrated the story of a possible apocalypse and how the human race attempts to avert this crisis. The movie makes it very clear that the reason for the crisis to have happened in the first place was a series of nuclear explosions that were conducted by the Soviet Union and The United States of America. These explosions are then said to have an effect that is catastrophic and the future of the whole of mankind is then in jeopardy. This ability of science to affect the whole of mankind is something that arises out of mankind’s recognition of itself as a singular entity. This recognition came about in a major way as a result of the world wars where the world was united in war, with the whole of humanity fighting on one side or the other. Humanity then was seen as a whole. This however, also meant that nothing could be completely local ever again. The atomic bomb and its ability to wipe out the whole of humanity in a single strike was something that created a great deal of fear amongst the people of the world for whom even the unity of humanity and its future lay in the answer to certain questions. These questions centred on how to use science and the way in which it would progress. This was then seen in movies that were a part of the genre of science fiction. Science fiction could then be employed to articulate the fears of an entire generation of people who had no say in their own future where it would be decided by the ruling class of politicians. The dehumanizing ability of the bomb, where millions of people would be wiped out without leaving traces of individuals was also something that the people of this era was extremely fearful of. The movie’s depiction of individual human beings can then be seen to be a consolation of the desire on the part of the audience for individuality (Guest). Another aspect of the movie is its focus on the Cold War. Released in 1961, the movie talks of the nuclear explosions that were conducted by the Soviet Union and the United States of America. The tussle between these major powers led to countries becoming a part of one power bloc or the other. However, it also led to fear among mankind as to what the ultimate outcome of such rivalry would be. It is significant that the arms race that took place between these two powers is referred to in this movie. It is thus, again the fear of science and the pace of its progress that leads to fear amongst the masses. It is this fear that movies of the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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