Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Comparing The Chrysalids and The Day of the Triffids :: comparison compare contrast essays

The Chrysalids and The Day of the Triffids    _____John Wyndham's science fiction novels, The Chrysalids and The Day of the Triffids, do not focus on incredible and unbelievable developments in technology, as do novels of many of the stereotypical science fiction writers, yet instead focus on how the people; particularly the protagonist, deal with the many uncomfortable situations they are faced in the frightening world of the future.    _____The Day of the Triffids is perhaps Wyndham's best known novel, and tells of explosions in space blinding a large proportion of the population, at the same time as an agricultural experiment goes horribly wrong, and millions of triffids, carnivorous plants, populate every corner of the globe, threatening mankind's very existence. In The Day of the Triffids, Wyndham speculates on many things. He contemplates how the people would deal with wide-spread blindness, and how they would accept the danger of carnivorous plants on the loose - not a contemporary invention, simply basic biology working against us. In his writings he considers how the remaining people of the world would deal with such a situation, that changing situations do require new ways, and what new ways would gain acceptance.    _____Speculation about how people would react widespread blindness is an integral part of The Day of the Triffids. Wyndham considered what the consequences would be; that most of the population would die of starvation because of their inability to carry out normal daily tasks such as buying the groceries and preparing meals without the assistance of a person with twenty-twenty vision, not to mention the overhanging danger of the triffids.    'My dear,' I said. 'I don't like this anymore than you do. I've put the alternative badly before you. Do we help those who have survived the catastrophe to rebuild some kind of life?' (p 103)    Wyndham uses quotes such as that above to allow the reader to consider what the consequences would be, and also to work on the conscience of the receiving character. Wyndham considers how the people of the world would cope in such a disastrous situation with an overwhelming majority of the population being blind, where the small proportion still sighted are relied on by numbers of one thousand to one for the survival of the human race. He focuses on the devotion and responsibility it would take, to in effect, save civilization as we now know it.

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