I chose to listen to “The Roads Must Roll” and “The World the Children Made” and read “The Nine Billion Names of God.” In regard to how science fiction can serve as a catalyst for the critique of society I believe that science fiction gets a lot of its material from the commonly held beliefs and behaviors of society. In “The Roads Must Roll,” there seemed to be a theme of capitalism and how the desire to make money causes the importance of human life to be cast aside. Even though people were dying, the main objective was to keep the roads rolling. Furthermore it demonstrated how reliant people can become on things that are not necessities until we deem them so. The broadcast illustrates how becoming overly attached to things that merely make out lives easier can have detrimental effects on our freedoms and happiness. In “The world the Children Made,” we see a debate on whether or not to discipline children with physical punishment and an eagerness to abandon manual work for a reliance on technology. In “The Nine Billion Names of God,” we see how not believing in foreign beliefs does not save you from the possibility of them being factual. Science fiction seems to be akin to satire in respect to it being able to critique society without being dull or blunt. In regard to science fiction’s critique of the nature of science and technology, it seems to have a pretty negative view of it. Although I don’t regularly read or watch science fiction, what I have seen always seems to involve a theme of how technology and science will be the downfall of the human race. It seems to suggest that human kind is incapable of maintaining the acts that make us human and instead are only capable of falling into the lure of technology’s promises of an easy life. It seems to constantly be warning us of the inevitable dangers ahead as we continue to progress technologically.
November 13, 2013