BP 10–Due 4/11/24

For Blog Post 10, you have two jobs:

  1. Excluding P. Burke and Delphi, discuss the next three most important characters in Tiptree’s “The Girl Who Was Plugged in.” Provide a brief 1-2 sentence overview for each character that explains their role in the story. Go on to explain why you put them among the top three most important characters. You should be sure to show an understanding of the story all the way through to the end.
  2. Discuss how this story that is set in the future can be interpreted as a critique of our own society.

Make sure to leave 4 comments for BP 9 by the 11th as well.

Presentations for 4/16

  • Khalil Issa–Brian Aldiss
  • Albert Gonzalez–Jules Verne
  • Tyler Julien–Kurt Vonnegut

Readings for 4/16

  • Philip K.Dick–We Can Remember it For You Wholesale (1966) (19 pages)
  • Greg Bear–Shrodinger’s Plague (2002) (8 pages)
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Warning about using AI to Write Blog Posts

Dear Students of ENG 2420:

I’ve discussed this in class and it is on the syllabus. You may not use Artificial Intelligence programs to write your blog posts for you. I read through all the posts and it is very easy to detect when someone is using AI. There are AI content detectors that can discern between human-generated and machine-generated content and provide evidence that someone has used machine-generated content. Nonetheless, when you are trained, as am I, it’s very apparant when someone isn’t using their own language. Recently, there have been several students who have posted using AI, insulting not only my human intelligence but also insulting the rest of the class by cheating. This is a warning to anyone who thinks they can get away with cheating.

The syllabus states that using AI without citation is considered plagiarism and plagiarism is a serious offense that could potentially result in expulsion from the college. Anyone who uses AI will receive a zero for their initial offense. Subsequent attempts will result in an F for the course and such cases will be reported to the academic standards committee. Don’t do it. If you’ve done it, Stop.

Professor Lest贸n


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BP10-Yamilet Vasquez

While reading “The Girl Who Was Plugged In” by James Tiptree, I was able to learn how there were many characters involved throughout the story. Delphi, or who she truly is, Rima, is used for advertisement in a world where it is illegal. Through capitalism and sexism, she is taken advantage of by Mr. Cantle who sees her as profit rather than human. The only reason she was able to exist was because of Dr. Tesla, who essentially helped create her alongside with the help of Joe, who helped train Delphi and overall helped with the technical stuff. These three characters, I feel, play a big role throughout this story: Dr. Tesla, Mr. Cantle, and Joe.

  1. A character who I believe is important is Dr. Tesla, a scientist who was there while Delphi was being made and was the one who showcased his work essentially. “The bushy Doctor Tesla is there, braced by two budgetary types and a quiet fatherly man whom he handles like hot plasma. Joe swings the door wide and she steps shyly in. Their little Delphi, fifteen and flawless. Tesla introduces her around. She鈥檚 child-solemn, a beautiful baby to whom something so wonderful has happened you can feel the tingles.” (pg7) I feel like in this scene, he was showcasing the “perfect girl” he had helped make. However, I find this unsettling and inhumane for him to call a fifteen-year-old girl flawless and basically treat her like an object or a new item he is showing off. In the end, with the tragic death of Delphi, he sees what he has made dead, and Paul wants Dr. Tesla to fix her but in they end he can’t do anything about it.
  2. Another character who plays a big role is Mr. Cantle, who is essentially the one in charge of these operations and also uses Delphi as advertisement. I feel that you are able to see a lot of sexism as well as how capitalism plays a role in this. Mr. Cantle sees Delphi as an 鈥渋nvestment鈥 and not some girl who is actually living through Delphi, called Rima. 鈥淢r. Cantle, clears his throat. ‘Well, young lady, are you ready to go to work?’聽‘Yes, sir,’ gravely om the elf.聽 ‘We鈥檒l see. Has anybody told you what you鈥檙e going to do for us?’ ‘No, sir.’ Joe and Tesla exhale quietly. ‘Good.’ He eyes her, probing for the blind brain in the room next door.鈥(pg7) Although Delphi comes to a tragic end, there’s another chick who is Delphi and 鈥淣ext year she鈥檚 back on the yacht getting sympathy for her tragic breakdown,鈥 (pg31) showing me that these girls are dispensable and seen nothing more than profit. Showing that there is no end to greed and exploitation.
  3. A protagonist in this story who also plays an essential role is Joe. He is essentially there to help with the creation of Delphi and assist with training. I felt he had more compassion than most characters. Although he was there to assist, 鈥淛oe is also crying a little; he alone had truly loved P. Burke. P. Burke, now a dead pile on a table, was the greatest cybersystem he has ever known, and he never forgets her.鈥(pg30) Although he did feel some way, he still played a role in the exploitation of Delphi and knew what he was doing throughout the whole time. I’m not trying to justify his actions, but he wasn’t the worst character in the end.

Connecting this story to today’s society isn’t that far off from reality. A quote from this story that stood out to me was, 鈥淒on鈥檛 worry about a thing. You鈥檒l have people behind you whose job it is to select the most worthy products for you to use. Your job is just to do as they say. They鈥檒l show you what outfits to wear to parties, what suncars and viewers to buy and so on. That鈥檚 all you have to do.鈥 (pg 9) The reason that this stood out to me is because many celebrities or influencers sign contracts where they basically sign away their lives and are controlled by record labels or companies. All they have to do is promote or advertise products, and they get free clothing, products, and even trips. But at what cost?


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BP 10 Albert Gonzalez

The characters I would like to talk about in the story would be ,mike, Roger聽聽聽聽聽聽 .All of these characters have some sort of infacturation for P. burke that can be seen within the聽 novel. Just like P. Burke Roger was a victim to the system. Rogers experiences show the settings of the novel and how it mostly shapes most of characters within the novel.

The scientist within the story also can he known as a malice character in which shapes mostly聽 everyone鈥檚 destiny . Another character that might not get as much recognition in the novel is the mother聽 in which shapes the main characters personal in the story.All these characters lack of ethics and responsibility gives the novels a 聽theme of narcissism and abandonment which can be seen in 聽P.Burkes personality . To answer the 2nd questions more laws need to be put into place to control ethics of scientists. Spreading disease for science experiments is one instance which can get out of hand in real life. Since we control many diseases if these get out to the public as a experiment can lead to catastrophic consequences to our society just like uncheck led experiments in the novel led to catastrophe.

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“The Girl Who Was Plugged In” By James Tiptree Jr. (Alice Sheldon) is set in a distant future where advertising has become outlawed by the state. However, some very powerful people were able to find a loophole in this ban and continue to influence society through a kind of surrogate underground project of well . . influencers so to speak. The main antagonist(s) are P. Burke, who is an ugly and disfigured 17-year old female who has just attempted to commit suicide, also against the law, and Delphi the beautiful young influencer roaming the open and beautiful world and is controlled by a physically augmented Burke from a closet 500 feet below the surface of a Pennsylvania town.

The man who proposes the opportunity to the dying Burke is Mr. Cantle. He explains the program, its purpose, and her role in the game as his offer for a life unimaginable and full of admiration sells the young girl into a complex dual reality. His role is to maintain the overall influence over the people in order to remain in capital power over the regular folk. In plain terms, he and the program run by the upper echelon of the society clearly represent capitalism and its influence on modern daily life.

Another key player in the story is Joe. A seemingly more down to earth character who is more representative of the working class, possessing the technical knowledge to run and operate the complex system that makes the program work. Joe is the one who works with Burke throughout her new life underground and aids her in working all of the new connections to the Delphi doll in the “real world”

Finally, there is Mr. Paul Isham who is introduced later in the story, falling in love with and becoming infatuated with Delphi who is seemingly much older at this point. They begin to fall further for one another, and Delphi remains secretive about her situation. Paul eventually discovers the truth behind Delphi and brings her underground to set everything right as rain where he also discovers Burke. He is so disgusted by her physical appearance that he pushes her over and out of the way which in turn kills both his beautiful Delphi and the monstrous Philadelphia Burke.

The world that they live in, although pretty dystopic does not echo too far from contemporary society. The entirety of their culture is spoon fed to the people from a massive corporate group like GTX in the form of these “gods”. This story was written in 1974, set an unknown distance into the future and starts to hit a little too close to home when you think about how the influencer “gods” are just regular people for the most part but have become ads themselves. The connection with the word influencer in tandem with the way she describes the admiration and sway that the celebrities have on the public tied this whole association together for me. Another sentiment from the story is that of discontent with our own self-worth and self-image when we are forced compare ourselves to the barrage of content that floods any and all of our media.

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BP10: “The Girl Who Was Plugged In”

  1. Excluding P. Burke and Delphi, the next three most important characters in Tiptree鈥檚 鈥淭he Girl Who Was Plugged In鈥 are Doctor Tesla, Mr. Cantle, and Paul Isham. Doctor Tesla is one of the most important characters in the story because he essentially allows for P. Burke to become this brand-new person who is loved and adored by the world, while also benefitting out of it. Doctor Tesla is also the one who explains to Paul that he killed the person who animated the body of Delphi. Another one of the most important characters in the story is Mr. Cantle, who is with Delphi throughout the story. Mr. Cantle is who is referred to as the 鈥渇atherly man鈥 and he is important because he thoroughly explains to P. Burke what is expected of her and the rules she must follow. Mr. Cantle also helps convince the others not to cut the transmission because it would kill the remote and hurt a huge part of the investment. Paul Isham is a character we are introduced to well into the story but he is still one of the most important characters in the story because he is Delphi鈥檚 love interest. In the story, he discovers the truth about Delphi and attempts to 鈥渟ave her鈥 by finding the lab where her real 鈥渇orm鈥 rests. This ultimately leads to P. Burke鈥檚 death.
  2. This story that is set in the future can be interpreted as a critique of our own society because our society values the young and beautiful. Like in the story, we are more likely to purchase products based on the people advertising them to us. In other words, if we watch an advertisement where the model is attractive, it is more than likely that one would purchase whatever item they are selling compared to someone who is unattractive. In the story, P. Burke was seen as a monster because of her appearance, but when she was Delphi, she was adored by all. Even though she was trained to behave in a certain manner for the sake of her new job, not much could have changed about her so that proves that although P. Burke looked different, she was still the same person with the same personality, just with a newfound confidence. Our society is similar in the sense that we judge people based on attractiveness even though they might be great people and we trust those who are attractive because we assume that if we purchase the products they are advertising, we are or would be just as attractive as them.
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BP – 10 – Joshua Caesar

James Tiptree Jr.’s story “The Girl Who Was Plugged In” is a very bleak and complex story that is about a world where beautiful celebrities are remote controlled by other people to sell products and help the rich get richer. Throughout the story, we meet many different characters that play important roles in P. Burke’s life and her transition into her new body.

For example, one of the first characters we meet is a man named Joe. Joe a man who works at GTX, or the Global Transmissions Corporation, and he works as a supervisor during P. Burke’s technical training in her new body. Throughout the story, Joe tries his best to explain P. Burke’s situation to her and guide her through the ups and downs of her new life, but he does leave out many key details that may have stopped P. Burke from going through with the whole procedure, like how she was viewed and treated as an advertisement by many of the people around her, and nothing more.

Another character we are introduced to in the story is Mr. Cantle, who is presented as one of the men behind P. Burke’s whole situation, in other words, he is her boss. In the beginning, Mr. Cantle introduces himself as a gentlemen who wants what is best for P. Burke as she begins her new life as Delphi. He goes over many of the things she will be doing for Mr. Cantle and GTX and acts as if he has her best interests at heart, but we learn that that is all a facade. We see that Mr. Cantle is very irritable and even when Delphi makes one mistake, he views her as a failure and a waste of time. Mr. Cantle only sees Delphi and P. Burke as another advertisement and a means to an end, nothing more.

One of the most important characters we meet is Paul Isham III.聽 Paul Isham is a director who was working on a project not too far from where Delphi was, and as soon as he laid eyes on her he fell in love. Paul and Delphi would go on to spend a lot of time together and grow closer, all the while Delphi is doing everything in her power to not let him know the truth about her situation. Eventually, Paul learns about Delphi’s situation and does everything in his power to help free her, but when he encounters the real P. Burke, he is disgusted. However, he still wishes for her to be free from this life but, ultimately, it is his intense feelings for Delphi that leads to her and P. Burkes’s death.

This story can definitely be seen as a way to critique the way our society operates and the values that we have as a whole. For example, the idea that many people, both boys and girls, envision themselves living a life in a body that is not their own is very negative and P. Burkes’s character shows that. We see that, overtime, P. Burke begins to completely throw away the life she once had and the person she once was in favor of this new one, when the people around Delphi do not even view her as a human, they just see her as an advertisement. This story shows that giving up your integrity and self-respect just to live a life that you may think is amazing is not worth it in the long-run

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BP 10 – Khalil Issa

Paul Isham, Joe, and Mr. Cantle are the next three most important characters.

Paul served as both Delphi and Burke love interest. I put him as the second first important charters behind them for that very reason he was the who they fell in love with (although he was in love with Delphi on the outside and Burke on the inside) and after finding out her secret he tries to save from what he thinks is Delphi being enslaved. Now you have Joe who serves as the man who supervises the part of Delphitraining. Because this training is what lead her to living a life outside I believe Joe being part of her trading makes him important. Finally, Mr. Cantle who plays the role of Delphi鈥檚 Boss regarding the testing of products because the was the very purpose Delphi was created he is looked as important to me.

This story can be interpreted as a critique of our own society because of the theme of this stories focus around a feline鈥檚 body and howit must look a certain way it also showcases just significance of the mind. The idea of one physical appearance being the key to some success in life was a huge problem back then and is till is now especially on females of all ages which can lead to harassment which can occasionally lead to sucide or at least attempts of it, even the act of retribution (revenge) can happen which to other terrible results can happen. All these are things that happen in today鈥檚 society and it鈥檚 all these problems the story shows, making P. Burke believe she nothing because of here appearance to the point she would rather live her life with her brain in some one else who is considered to have it all in her opinion and that is she get to be.

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BP10 – Gabriel Aguilar

The story “The Girl Who Was Plugged In” by James Tiptree, otherwise known as Alice Sheldon, is a story with deep roots in our society. It revolves around the themes of escapism, capitalism, infatuation, and greed. These themes run deep within our world and when used in the narrative allow us to understand where these impact our lives. However the themes of the novel aren’t the only aspects of the story that reflect our society, many of the actual events reflect things that occurred in the past and still occur in modern times. These themes are directly involved within the three characters second most important to P. Burke.

The world of “The Girl Who Was Plugged In” shows us a version of our society in which the ads that have become commonplace within our media consumption have been forcibly restricted, and have been replaced with word of mouth. This is explained by Mr. Cantle, one of three major characters in the story, “Advertising as it used to be is against the law. A display other than the legitimate use of the product, intended to promote its sale.” (Tiptree 7). Not only is Mr. Cantle important because he introduces us to the reason why Delphi is required, but he also represents one of the major themes, capitalism perfectly. Mr. Cantle is this story’s main antagonist, and the relation to capitalism seems to be his driving force. All he cares about at the end of the day is the output of Delphi.

Another important character in the story is Delphi’s main love interest, Paul. He introduces us to the concept of infatuation, and continue’ s the throughline of greed throughout the story, taking the baton from both P. Burke. and Mr. Cantle. Sheldon is trying to hammer home the difference between love and infatuation with this novel and decides to do so by playing out a scene in which, when Paul has to look past physical appearance, he can’t seem to do it. “Wouldn鈥檛 you, if a gaunt she-golem flab-naked and spouting wires and blood came at you clawing with metal studded paws鈥斺淕et away!鈥 He knocks wires.” (Tiptree 29). And in the end his greed, for wanting her more than reason ends up killing the Delphi that he knew. Not that he would have lasted long with her anyway.

The last important character within the story is Joe, who apart from P. Burke and Delphi is the one who exemplifies escapism the most, mostly due to the fact that he is the one who provides Delphi with that means of escape. He is the engineer, and is placed in charge of taking care of her. He is also the only one who truly cares for Delphi, “Joe doesn鈥檛 mind P.Burke鈥檚 looks, he hasn鈥檛 noticed them. To Joe, system matrices are beautiful.” (Tiptree 5). Joe being the one who can look past P. Burke’s appearance tells us a lot about him but mostly, that he understands that things aren’t what they appear to be on the outside. He sees his systems as means to get to a beautiful end, and not as the ugly mash that they are.

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BP-10 (Isaiah.S)


Dr Tesla Quine plays the role of the scientist likely in charge of creating Delphi as well as being a founding member of the Burke project for the GTX corporation, his developments in science is what gives P. Burke took this chance at life through Delphi albeit for monetary value but also to prototype new augments to make such a life like being until her death at the end of the story where he is the realist that tries to tell Paul that she is indeed dead by his intrusion of the neurolab.聽


Mr Joe Cantle acts as an adopted fatherly figure to Delphi Though his true intentions only lie with using her to defy the Huckster acts so that her advertising career can land him and the corporation mor money, we can witness more of his personality becoming apparent when Paul seemingly kidnaps her which leaves Mr Cantle to loses his fatherly tone before realizing they can isolate them in the lab to which he regains his composure.聽


Paul Isham the 3rd is a more complex character next to Delphi in the story because of his adopted love for her as she rises in acting but also his dissociation with the company after he notices much of her augments when he climbed over her in bed which starts to drive him into a chivalrous insanity with the sole idea of saving her. This of course goes further when he uses his connections to break into the GTX facility that then causes P.Burke to seek him out from the lab and dying at his feet which causes Delphi to die as well leaving him a confused mess of a person with a gun.聽


This is a story set in the future where someone can feed their consensus into an android body within a digital age that outlaws advertising of any product less it be through GTX or other illegal means. This is similar to how we have policies for the internet today and constant debate over the rights of speech and whether the technology becomes available to project ourselves somewhere else physically that doesn鈥檛 change the outcome of effects that media holds on people and just what lengths people will go to control it or out maneuver the any policies against such.聽

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“A Voice in the Night”, by William Hope Hodgson, is a story essentially two parts. Part one is two sailors (Will and George) who come across a distress call in the distance as they are marooned in a fog. Part two is the telling of the stranger and his partners story of being shipwrecked from the Albatross and deserted on an island of some sort. The stranger explains the encounter that they had with a strange, gray fungusy lichen creature that has invaded and infested the shipwreck as well as the island where they had held up for solace.

The most interesting aspect of the story to me was the 鈥渟andy鈥 bits of the beach where the shipwrecked couple had made their way ashore. The old man describes the entire beach in the lagoon to be covered in the sponge. All but curious patches of “fine white sand”, which were only described in that manner. The old man had no clue as to what the sandy white patches actually were. This descriptor had me thinking the most about where the sponge came from and what is was doing all over that lagoon? And what was the white sand?
I would speculate that the creature infesting the crew and the island is alien in origin.

The old stranger completes his story with the fate that he and his partner had succumbed to under the sponge. The discovery of small flecks at first growing on their skin is blown sky high when the old man seems to be touched by one of the blobs. There was a man under there, and all of the mounds that were described in the spaces of the ship were found to be the crew that was nowhere to be found when they came aboard. As creature reaches for the man, his lips are touched, and he gets a taste of the monster. His craving becoming insatiable, the man begins and continues to eat the gray mess. After this scene, the white sand can make sense as maybe the waste product of the creature eating. Crapping out bones and minerals that can not be digested and the bleached calcium mash lines parts of the beach where the mold cannot grow. The story ends with the sentiment of “the monster eating itself” and the old man rows off in the distance as the sun rises and Will and George are able to get a good look at the amorphous gray mass steering the boat.
A personal side note; It may seem trivial, but the language just could not grab me throughout the reading, making this my least favorite so far. Though the story itself was interesting and creative, it was just a little repetitive, and so prim and clean that it just felt sterile. Which is also kind of funny considering the story is about an obnoxious fungus.

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Alexis Xinol Morales – BP 9

The story “The Voice in the Night” by William Hope Hodgson begins with a ship’s captain, which I believe Is George, and then Will and another seaman, out on their voyage in the Northern Pacific Ocean. He and his crew discover a little boat floating in the wide sea. Inside the boat, there聽was a guy聽in serious difficulty and need of help, but he was really strange because he would disappear and appear out of nowhere and it’s like he didn’t want to be seen. But it soon seemed it’s because he had faced “some intolerable horror.”

The guy in聽the boat tells the captain and crew a terrifying story of how he and his wife聽were stranded聽on聽an abandoned island when their ship sank. On the island, they encountered odd otherworldly beings that were like grey fungus that appeared from the depths of the ocean. He barely got off the island alive after seeing how many of the fungus there was around the boat. However, the wife died after eating the fungus that was created by this odd creature since they were running out of food and she was curious about eating one, leaving the person on the boat聽scarred by the inexplicable atrocities he witnessed, which is why he didn’t want to go near the captain and the crewmates in the first place.

This story聽explores themes of isolation, despair, and existential terror as the individual on the little boat and his wife encounter entities beyond human comprehension. Hodgson creates a sense of mystery and fear, through their journey, the story addresses the world’s secrets, which go beyond explanations聽and can drive people insane. This scar theme is used throughout Hodgson’s career as a writer, especially ordinary stuff like sea creatures and this story really delved into it.


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BP9: 鈥淭he Voice in the Night鈥

In this short story, there is a crew who encounters an old man that is begging for some help. This man was very strange because when he would give information about himself, he would pause abruptly before. The random man was also adamant about not coming too close to the boat and he would want to avoid the light at all costs. All of these details gave me suspicions that the story was going to be about sirens and that the crew was going to be led out into the water to drown. I also assumed this because he did not want any of the crew members to go to his wife, so I thought this was a way that the siren was trying to lead them out into the water.


It wasn鈥檛 until the strange man began to explain the story of how they were stranded and ultimately had to survive on their own for quite some time now. As the man is explaining his story, he mentions this strange fungus that they originally found on a random ship him and his wife came across. It was then revealed that the fungus was so severe, that even if they tried to clear it out, it would still grow back oddly enough. What I found strange was when this fungus began to spread to their clothing and then the lady鈥檚 hands. As the story goes along, it is revealed that the wife actually consumed some of the grey fungus out of desperation and lack of food. Despite having her promise never to consume the fungus again, the husband also folds at some point and eats some too. I believed at this point that this may have been because they have been surrounded by the grey fungus for so long that they had just become used to it and out of such desperation, they were curious to see if it could satisfy some kind of hunger.


The way I understood the ending was that there was some other type of entity lurking within the actual fungus making people addicted to it because the old man mentioned how while he went deep into the twisted paths, there was some type of figure of a 鈥渄istorted human creature鈥 there that attempts to strike at him and leaves some of the fungus on his lips. After licking his lips and tasting the sweetness of it, the old man strikes a hunger for the fungus and devours a load of it. It seemed to me that this fungus took over and as a person consumes it, they essentially become it, and the ending of the story reveals that. In other words, since the old man and his wife ate the fungus, it began growing on them and eventually took over their bodies, which is why when he left the crew, all they saw was a 鈥済rey sponge.鈥 This grey sponge had to be the old man leaving and he essentially became this 鈥渟ponge鈥 because of the consumption of the fungus.

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BP 8 Albert Gonzalez

In bloodlines the superior race the telic might be just a better race overall in many attributes than one. However just like Maslow鈥檚 popular hierarchy 聽聽聽聽of needs 聽theory of needs goes we need a who bunch 聽of needs to be fully happy at times.

This fulfils the psychological side of ones self actualization so Tlic counting on the inferior species the terrans聽 could be a huge help for their psyche. Gan in the story can be seen trying to go through his own needs throughout the whole story. Overall

Gan wanting to be the better person puts him in a catch 22 state聽 where no matter if he tries or not will still put him in the same situation聽 not being a smart Tlic. Which all together shows on the way he carries himself through the story. Most of his self actualization as he is more of loner can be seen throughout.

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BP 9 Albert Gonzalez

In story of your life聽 mystery of what the creature exactly is gives a sense of passion to the main chracters.As they were curious wanting even a ” sound spectrograph” to know what they are saying .

The heptapods even though not being able to speak their language I鈥檓 time and space give a true sense of curiosity. in which often gets lost once one person loses the ability to try to learn more.

All together the devoted 聽nature of the protagonist Louise as they went on聽聽 “learning the rules of their script before writing anything legible” is another quote that聽聽 determinates the passion to fully learn the hepatods ways inside and out. No matter the circumstance.

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BP-9 (Isaiah.S)

聽The reading I have chosen to work on will be 鈥淭he Voice in the Night鈥 by William Hope Hodgson, this is a story that begins with a small crew sailing in an unknown position within the perimeter of the northern pacific, the time of day is within the dark shade of night and thick fog covers the quiet waters. Although the story begins with the point of view from an unnamed sailor and his friend the captain; 鈥淲ill鈥, the narrative soon shifts over to the unknown old man on the water who pleads to keep the lights off and deliver some food.

At first the protagonist is very suspicious of the old man who so suddenly announces his presence yet thanks to the negotiations聽 and a brief summary of the old man鈥檚 situation both Will and the protag decide to grant the old man some rations from the ship to which there鈥檚 a 3 hour pause of silence and the men on the ship are told the man and his wife are grateful before moving forward with his story about how they鈥檝e been stranded for 6 months following a shipwreck they got into on their voyage to Frisco from Newcastle and thus had to sail on a makeshift raft for 4 weeks until reaching a seemingly abandoned vessel filled with mold and supplies which thankfully was anchored to a nearby island.

Although the story explains that they had access to a water purifier on the ship, the capability to fish and a good expense of ship rations the old man would then explain that the mold seems alive in it鈥檚 increasing affliction on the ship, so much so that even he and his wife began to be afflicted with the mold growing on their bodies with the eventual final trip to the ship as well because of a molded human that tried to attack the man just after he discovered there were no more rations, and so in the end as the man drifted away telling the sailors he and her were thankful same as the blessing of god it is the protagonist that catches a silhouette of a moldy creature rowing away therefore revealing the dreaded fate of the shipwrecks.



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BP 9–Extra Credit–Due 4/4/24 11:59 pm

Since we didn’t have class this week because I was out sick, I’m going to make this blog post optional for extra credit. I’m also going to make the comments for BP 8, which are due at the same time, also for extra credit. This is a good opportunity to do some catching聽 up if you’ve fallen behind on posts and comments.

Our reading for this week was

  • Ted Chiang鈥揝tory of your life (29 pages.)
  • William Hope Hodgson鈥揟he Voice in the Night (1907) (11 pages)

This is an open assignment. You are free to write about what you want, but it should be a minimum of three paragraphs and should shed some light on the text. In other words, it should be an analysis of some kind, not a summary. Your analysis should help us understand the readings better because you’ve explored something that isn’t at first obvious. You are free to write about either reading or both. You are also free to go beyond three paragraphs. Make sure, however, that your writing is correct and concise. It should also be clear and flow from one idea to the next. It should show that you’ve spent time revising and editing for correctness and style.

Presentations for 4/9/24

For the presentations, we’re going to go ahead and move everybody down one time slot. You can see the revised schedule on the upper right-hand side. On the 9th we’ll have

  • Naheed Reyhad鈥擵ernor Vinge
  • Khalil Issa鈥揃rian Aldiss

Readings for 4/9/24

  • PaoloBacigalupi-“The People of Sand and Slag” (2004)
  • James Tiptree Jr. (Alice Sheldon)鈥擳he Girl who was Plugged in. 1973
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Khalil Issa – BP8

The theme slavery is explored the most in my opinion. My reasons for thinking this is nauseous these people are forces led against their will to have en egg implanted in them which hatches and are forced to withstand as they are cut open so the Tlic can retrieve their new born offspring. Gan proves this we he attempts to commute suicide and makes a comment how he never had a say In how his body was to be treated.

In addition to that you have the story that Qui tells Gan about a how a man was impregnated with a Tlic eggs once their inside they hatch, hooking to their veins and feeding on their blood before they’re cut away and transplanted into a dead animal.

But in this case there there was no dead animal that could be used as the host which means they via being eat from the infused and the Tlic refuse to save the man despite not being his fault for why there isn鈥檛 a second host for the Tlics and the fact they can still reuse him again they instead view them as property, using them to give birth their children satisfying their needs and if something prevents them from doing so like the requirements aren鈥檛 met they throw them away and leave them to die even when the beg for there life. This only make Gan decision to performed suicide more understandable, because at least when he goes out, he goes out on his own terms, rather then anyone else鈥檚.

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BP 8

Octavia Butler鈥檚 鈥淏loodchild鈥 displays many instances of manipulation throughout the text. Humans within this story鈥檚 society are relied upon to reproduce with an Alien species in order to keep society running. At first the main character, Gan, is uncomfortable with the thought of reproducing with these aliens. He鈥檚 then forced to defend T鈥橤atoi in the face of an old friend without considering their relationship he then acts upon what T鈥橤atoi was asking of him, this showing off the pull T鈥橤atoi may have on him.

It鈥檚 believed that Gan is fully under T鈥橤atoi鈥檚 influence but Gan doesn鈥檛 want to admit whether or not he is so he gets upset whenever anyone tries to bring that point up. It鈥檚 also believed that these feelings come from how he was raised and how everything around his has had an influence on him. His mother who鈥檚 played a big part of his life often times puts herself 聽first when there鈥檚 stuff that needs to be done for T鈥橤atoi because she鈥檇 rather it be her than her son which also shows a bit of manipulation because she鈥檚 still willing to do stuff for this authoritative figure.

Some other mentions of how T鈥橤atoi may have relation to Gan鈥檚 father adds onto the whole theme of manipulation because this then gets Gan鈥檚 brain to start thinking of all of the other things that may follow as a consequence of certain actions.

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BP 8 – Joshua Caesar

Throughout Octavia Butler’s story “Bloodchild”, we see the theme of hierarchy throughout and we see how hierarchy affects the story and the characters within it. We learn that a group of humans, referred to as “Terrans” are living in a community known as the Preserve on an alien planet that is ruled by the alien race known as the Tlic. With the Tlic and the Terrans interacting throughout the story, we see just how much this hierarchy has affected the way these characters act and the way they see the world around them.

For example, the story is told through the perspective of Gan, a Terran, and we are able to see the subtle ways that this hierarchy system has affected the way he sees the people and beings around him, especially the Tlic. In the story, Gan states, “T’Gatoi was hounded on the outside…I had lived outside with her. I had seen the desperate eagerness in the way some people looked at me. It was a little frightening to know that only she stood between us and that desperation that could so easily swallow us”. In this quote we see Gan going over the reality that him and the rest of the Terrans have to live in, the reality that only one person is standing in between them and death. This idea of thinking that without having this person around would mean you are good as dead is a result of the hierarchy system, making those at the bottom feel as though they are weak and they are at the mercy of those above them.

Throughout the st0ry we also see how T’Gatoi, a Tlic, uses her power and status to manipulate and have her way with the Terrans that she has gained the trust of. For example, in the text, it states, “‘Go out and slaughter an animal that is at least half your size.’ ‘Slaughter? But I’ve never-‘ She knocked me across the room. Her tail was an efficient weapon whether she exposed the sting or not. I got up, feeling stupid for having ignored her warning, and went into the kitchen. Maybe I could kill something with a knife or an ax”. In this quote, we see h0w T’Gatoi uses her status and power to push around those that she sees as inferior to have her way, even when they do not want to. Additionally, we see how this hierarchy has made Gan feel as if he is not strong enough to stand up for himself and tell T’Gatoi he does not want to do it.

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BP 8 – Alexis Xinol Morales

The subject of symbiosis is moved聽throughout Octavia Butler’s “Bloodchild” story.聽demonstrating the bond between the Tlic, an alien species. The Tlic are characterized as intelligent grub-like animals with numerous limbs that can extend claws and speak in human language, followed by the Terrans, who are humans. Symbiosis, in this story, is shown since it聽refers to the mutual dependency and coexistence between these two distinct species. The Terrans rely on the Tlic for protection and nutrition, while the Terrans host the Tlic’s descendants, known as grubs. This relationship shows聽the balance聽between relations of power and survival instincts.聽T’Gatoi protects and cares for Gan and his family, and Gan understands the need for this protection, comprehending the聽risks posed by the harsh world outside. This mutual trust is demonstrated when T’Gatoi defends Gan when he is attacked, emphasizing the symbiotic nature of their bond.

Furthermore, “power relationships” in this symbiotic connection show signs of hierarchy and manipulation. Despite Gan’s initial concerns about being a host for T’Gatoi’s kids, he eventually gives in to her persuasion, demonstrating T’Gatoi’s subtle manipulation and control over him. This聽scenario also shows聽the complicated relationship between them and how T’Gatoi is the one who “influences” and “forces” in symbiotic relationships, in which Gan may feel driven to conform to the intentions of T’Gataoi in places of authority, even if it like contradicts their preferences.


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BP8-Symbiosis in Bloodchild

Symbiosis is the relationship between two distinct species. That relationship must benefit them both positively to be considered symbiotic. Furthermore, that relationship can have dependence, like the Remora fish that eat sharks’ leftovers and are not eaten by the sharks because they eat parasites on their skin and in their mouth. They each provide a service to the other, which benefits them both.

“Bloodchild” explores a new planet where Terrans (humans) have migrated to escape persecution. We are also introduced to the Tilc, an alien species with lots of limbs and an affinity to Terrans and their body heat. The Tilc seem centipede-like based on their descriptions throughout the story.

The relationship between the Terrans and the Tilc is a symbiotic one. The Terrans receive the Tilcs’ unfertilized eggs to drink, which heals their wounds, wards off diseases, and extends their lives. In turn, the Tilc receive some Terran (mostly male) companions to carry their next generations, and a family’s warmth.

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BP8 – Gabriel Aguilar

Octavia Butler’s “Bloodchild” presents an excellent example of parasitic symbiosis. Parasitism, which the National Library of Medicine defines as “A symbiotic relationship in which a symbiont lives all or part of its life in or on a living host, usually benefiting while harming the host in some way and usually having a higher reproductive potential than the host.”(Overstreet 1) is at the forefront of this story and is pretty much exclusively the relationship between the Tlic and the Humans. In order to survive the Tlic implant the humans with their eggs for them to grow into adulthood with proper nutrients as well as protection. This type of parasitic symbiosis happens in a variety of animals in the world, however, Butler states that this story was largely based on the botfly of the Peruvian Amazon. “The botfly lays its eggs in wounds left by the bites of other insects. I found the idea of a maggot living and growing under my skin, eating my flesh as it grew, to be so intolerable, so terrifying that I didn鈥檛 know how I could stand it if it happened to me.” (Butler 20)

The parasitic relationship between the Tlic and humans is a scary, and yet somehow beautiful thing. While yes, the humans don’t necessarily have a choice in the matter, literally being caged by the Tlic, “Yeah. Stupid. Running inside the Preserve. Running in a cage.” (Butler 12) the humans have also found that they have been able to form a deep relationship with their captors. This relationship wasn’t always the case, and the fear of the situation, was said to only really settle once the humans began inviting the Tlic into their homes as a part of their family. “It was an honor to have T鈥橤atoi in the family, but it was hardly a novelty.” (Butler 1). Not only do the Tlic use the humans as the hosts for their spawn, they also seem to have developed a relationship in which the humans become a host for themselves, taking up residence within their homes, and on occasion protecting them from outside forces. It’s at this point in adulthood where I think an argument could be made that while their relationship is largely still Parasitism, it turns into something at least representing mutualism.

While I believe the shift that happens when the Tlic become adults is important I also am not exactly sure what to call the relationship going forward. The parasitic symbiosis is still there and largely active as the main reason for their relationship, however there is something deeper going on. At least, in T’gatoi’s case there is a love between her and Gan, “On one level, it鈥檚 a love story between two very different beings.” (Butler 20). We don’t exactly have a relationship like this on Earth, at least not that I was able to find. The closest I got to this was humans taking on pets, such as guard dogs. In the real world, some humans choose to buy dogs in order to help protect their homes and their young. Much like the Tlic use the humans to protect their spawn, and the humans use the Tlic to protect themselves within their homes. This, admittedly is a loose argument however, and the only other I found was an animal called the Ichneumon Wasp. These creatures are “…聽koinobiont parasitoids鈥攖hat is, they keep their hosts alive and functioning (more or less) as they feed either from the inside or the outside, eating the non-essential bits first and delivering the聽coup de grace when they are ready to pupate.” (University of Milwaukee) This isn’t exactly the same as what the Tlic are doing, however, some less scholarly articles claim that the parent wasp will implant chemicals that allow a host to have a longer life while implanting their eggs.

Ichneumon Wasp

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Each of the four themes can be extrapolated from the relationship between T’Gatoi, the Tlic and Lien the terran and her family. The one I felt the most in this story though, especially toward the end when we figure out about N’Tlic and T’Khotgif was manipulation.

From the very beginning with the eggs, all the way until the end of the gruesome hatching, the terrans were used as cocoons and eventually food for the offspring with I’m not really sure what tradeoff. They are taken care of and protected I suppose from the outsiders but with this fate at hand, like that of Lomas they are kind of doomed sooner or later. The span of control does not end with even the conversation between T’Gatoi and Gan at the very end of the story where the Tlic explains her plans on who will get T’Khotgif, but her family business and profession is politics! Not only does this creature have the control over this family in the home, but even has a say on the laws that get passed in their society. I would say sure they are enslaved in a sense. There is a clear hierarchy in the world they live in. There is surely a symbiosis between the two but the fact that they are essentially drugged constantly throughout all of this from the egg goo, makes it seem like there is less of a choice and that it is just easier to make them subservient to the reality of their relationship in this way.

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BP8: 鈥淏loodchild鈥

In the short story “Bloodchild” by Octavia Butler, we are shown a relationship between something similar to an alien and a human family. In my opinion, the relationship that these creatures have with the humans very closely resembles slavery. Although the author did not intend on portraying this kind of dynamic for her story, there are many parts that hint towards slavery, such as the lack of respect to autonomy. This is shown at the beginning of the story when T’Gatoi practically forced the mother to eat what was left of her son’s egg. Another example of this is when T’Gatoi uses her body to cage in the mother and then proceeding to sting her and draw a drop of blood.

It is clear in the story that T’Gatoi has a significant amount of power over the family and this is proven by how the family obeys her every request. For example, when she asks the daughter to take off the mother’s shoes, the daughter immediately does it, despite being drunkenly tired from consuming the egg. It was also clear in the story that the mother truly has no say in who the creature chose as the host for their children because the mother had other kids available, yet T’Gatoi preferred to wait for the brand new baby so that she can take part in all phases of development. Throughout the story, you can notice pretty quickly how much power T’Gatoi has over the family and their bodies because when she asks the mother to sleep/stand, she feels like she has no choice but to listen.

Another example of how the story gives off that dynamic of 鈥渟lavery鈥 is the fact that the humans each have their own armband with their name along with the name of their 鈥渙wner.鈥 This is kind of similar to how you would put a collar on a dog to show you have ownership over them, which is what I interpreted from the situation. T鈥橤atoi also punishes the family when they don鈥檛 do as she says, and this is shown when she knocks the son across the room for trying to argue with/talk back to her about how he鈥檚 never slaughtered an animal before. Overall, there is a significant amount of evidence throughout the story that proves there is some kind of slave and slave owner dynamic between the two parties.

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BP 8

In the story “Bloodchild” by Octavia Butler the theme of manipulation can be seen. Throughout the story Gans old best friend, Qui, was telling him that he had seen one of the Tlics eat a man. Gan did not know that his friend had seen this but did notice that Qui stayed away when Gan was with T’Gatoi as they reached adolescence. Qui stayed away because he knew that if anything happened to Gan, T’Gatoi would probably use Qui as a host. Gan does not believe what Qui says and even says that Xuan Hoa would be the one that would be used instead because she wants to be a host. Qui explains that a female couldnt be used because they are basically being kept for the next generations of host. Gan is manipulated into thinking that it is an easy process or thing and does not realize that they are being used as hosts for Tlics. Humans are manipulated into thinking that the females are allowed to just take care and bear their own children.

As Gan learns all this new information and after witnessing T’Gatoi cut open Lomas, he starts to fear what would happen to him. Tlic asks him to show him the weapon used to kill achti. Gan shows the gun but then points it up towards his chin and tells him he does not want to be a host anymore. T’Gatoi questions Gan if he would rather die than to host and even goes as far as to asking if Xuan Hoa should be used instead. Gan says yes at first but then realizes that she does not know what would await for her if she goes through the process of being a host. Gan is being emotionally manipulated and makes his final decision that he would be host.

In this story, Gans mother, Lien, is also being manipulated. Lien grew up with T’Gatoi and it is a tradition that humans would be host for Tlics. They were actual friends so Lien thought that if she had a son, it would be better to let her son be used by T’Gatoi than by another Tlic. The family eats eggs and they prolong life but Lien has stopped eating the eggs. She gives in and eats a small amount of egg which gets you feeling drunk. Lien drunkily tells T’Gatoi that if she thought she would sell her son for some eggs. I think that is the reason why she stops taking them, so she doesnt feel like she owes them anything. She wants to keep her son away from that. T’Gatoi knows that humans are given protection, food and a home in exchange for a host. That is an agreement that has been going on for a long time now. The whole human race is manipulated in order to survive.

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BP 8-Yamilet Vasquez

In “Bloodchild,” T’Gatoi’s manipulation of Gan is clear despite the gruesome realities he faces. He is Initially repulsed by the idea of being used for reproduction as he witnesses disturbing events like Lomas’s fate. However, when faced with T’Gatoi’s authority and the confrontation with his old friend Qui, Gan finds himself defending her actions and even resorting to hitting聽 Qui despite the relationship they had. When Qui tells him if he has been used yet I think it triggers him because he doesn’t want to hear the truth. This suggests that Gan may have been conditioned from birth to worship T’Gatoi, regardless of his personal beliefs.聽

Furthermore, Gan’s reluctance to confront the truth about T’Gatoi could stem from his upbringing under his mother’s influence. Where he was told that it was and 鈥渉onor鈥 to have T鈥橤atoi. I also think that Despite outwardly following T’Gatoi’s lead, Gan’s mother shows signs of protecting him from the harsh realities of their existence. She volunteers for tasks on his behalf and intervenes to shield him from certain experiences, indicating that she too was manipulated by T鈥橤atoi not only Gan. I also think that her not taking eggs and aging shows that she may not fully agree with T鈥橤atoi as well.

Moreover, I think that when Gan mentions how T’Gatoi has a connection to his father it adds another layer to the manipulation. The thought of harming T’Gatoi becomes entwined with the fear of harming his own father and further complicating his internal conflict. I feel that this just adds another layer to the manipulations which makes it harder for Gan to against T鈥橤atoi.聽

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BP 8 – Isaiah.S


To my own understanding this sci fi story in particular creates a more dramatic yet also manipulative story in which humanity in it鈥檚 expansion had a mass proportion of the human race labeled as 鈥淭erran鈥 and hoarded in nature preserves as though they were wildlife or worse, cattle, yet it is this same way of life that humans are provided with care and an elongated lifespan through the consumption of their masters eggs at the cost of fattening up.

The T鈥檒ic are described as being intelligent grub-like creatures with multiple limbs having the ability to extend claws and communicate in human language, alongside extended lifespans plus the ability to use their tails as whips or stingers. It is these same strange alien creatures that have created a massive government outlawing some human functionalities such as vehicles and firearms in order to regulate humans to serve the purpose of being used as breeding host for new T鈥檒ic, this brands the host as an N鈥橳lic.


The main character Gan and his family are under the care of the high ranking official T鈥橤atoi and thus is guaranteed longevity and care for their servitude, the problem stems from Gan not realizing what his fate from birth is until the incident with Bram Lomas whereas he saw the hatching process first hand being similar to wasp putting their eggs in caterpillars. It鈥檚 so shocking to the point where Gan questions if he should shoot himself or allow the creature to lay eggs into his sister instead of ever thinking about shooting the T鈥橤atoi out of loyalty and compassion from her 鈥渃are鈥 which leads to him making the sacrifice of having eggs laid inside of him with the reassurance that the procedure won鈥檛 kill him because of T’Gatoi鈥檚 soft words of encouragement as it happens.聽


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Bruce Sterling: The Professor and the Writer

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BP 8-“Bloodchild” Due 3/28 by 11:59 pm

Make sure to get comments completed for BP 6 and 7 by the 28th as well.

In three paragraphs, thoroughly explore one of the following themes in “Bloodchild.”

  • manipulation
  • heirachy
  • symbiosis
  • slavery

Readings for Tuesday, April 2nd:

  • Ted Chiang–Story of your life (29 pages.)
  • William Hope Hodgson–The Voice in the Night (1907) (11 pages)

Presentations for 4/2

  • Naheed Reyhad鈥擵enor Vinge
  • Khalil Issa–Brian Aldiss
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BP7-Yamilet Vasquez

On pages 60-61, we see Hamid going through a lot of deep feelings and thoughts. He’s learning surprising stuff about his parents and feeling unsure about what the Tourists are saying about this important person called the “Great Man.”聽 Even with all this heavy stuff, Hamid starts to feel connected to Tines, one of the Tourists, and even starts to care about the Blab, even though she’s not a real person. This shows how Hamid’s emotions are getting all mixed up, and he’s starting to see things in a different way. I think this is a good thing as this scene shows us Hamid’s inner struggles and how he tries to figure out what’s true and what’s not in the Tourist’s stories. It also shows how Hamid’s relationship with Tines, one of the Tourists changes from being enemies to possibly working together. When Hamid says he’s starting to like Tines more it can help suggest a shift in their relationship. This also helps us understand the story better because we see Hamid’s personal journey and how he deals with everything going on around him. It makes us think about bigger ideas like who to trust and what’s really important. Plus, it adds depth to the story’s themes like identity, loyalty, and overall finding the truth.聽

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BP 7

Some essential information from the story is Hamid’s childhood. He was adopted by Huss Thomphson and his wife. Hamid remembers being happy growing up even though he knew he was adopted because his parents had told him. He started college at 8 and was forced into math. He was not as good as his parents wanted him to be. That same year, everything started going bad. His mom left his dad and Hamid eventually stopped seeing her because she stopped visiting. Hamid overheard his dad having a conversation and that is where he learned that Thompson was hired to raise him. He felt anger towards his father. (pg 24-25) As the story goes on, Hamid is in Ravna’s world and she tells him the plan they had all along and how Hamid was supposed to be the clone of an important leader. Hamid learns more in detail about his childhood and finds out the real reason he never saw his mom again. He learns that his father was the one who really wanted Hamid to be happy and the mom took the money. Hamid was mad at his father for a long time but now Hamid was traumatized which was not something that was supposed to go according to plan. Now Hamid had to work with the Tines for two years to try and make himself a clone of the original leader. (56-59) This information helps us understand the story because it helps us learn about where the blabber came from and how she was used to try and be there for Hamid.

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On Page 17 of 聽鈥淭he Blabber鈥 by Vernor Vinge A description of the the city鈥檚 skyline is given where it鈥檚 said that starships formed a row in the sky with something described as dark being hung above but we then learn that it鈥檚 supposed to be protection that was promised by a friend of theirs in case they took the chance of escaping the life they鈥檝e come accustomed to in this 鈥渕iddle america鈥. These ships could even seen as a foreshadowing to an upcoming battle that may or may not occur when they鈥檙e provided with a once in 聽lifetime opportunities.

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BP7-Historical Preservation

In Vernon Vinge’s “The Blabber” page 33, the narrator describes the city as a shell, pretending to be an old (by their standard, future by ours) city. We read the imagery of the skyline, the structures, the advertisements, the lights, and the activity. On our earth (old earth) there is a village called Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia, in the 1930’s it was designed to look like it in the 18th century. Residents of the town pretend to live as they did in the old days, just like what’s happening in Middle America’s harbor city. An attempted recreation, struggling to act like the original also describes Hamid (a clone).

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BP7 – Joshua Caesar

In Vernor Vinge’s story “The Blabber”, we are given little hints and clues as to not only what the Blabber looks like, but also what the being is capable and its origins. We learn that it is being that is able to mimic language patterns and it is a being that has fur and talons, but all these descriptions are drip fed to us throughout the story and do not really help us get a good idea of what this being is and what it is truly capable of, that is up until page 29.

At this point, Hamid had just had a very tense conversation with both Ravna and Tines concerning the Blab and negotiations between them to have the Blab be given to them and Hamid being rewarded for that. After this, he was woken up in the middle of the night to a weird hissing sound and with this combined with having just communicated with Ravna and Tines, he contacted the slug to help get answers as to what was going on, and that was exactly what he got. When he calls the slug, Larry Fujiyama picks up and provides a lot of backstory to a species that many say is the same as or closely related to the Blab. On pages 29 and 30 we learn that this species is not only highly intelligent, but possesses technology that far exceeds that inside the Zone. We also learn that they were extremely merciless and tyrannical, using their technology to expand their empire and wipe out whole planets with ease, and all without ftl (faster than light).

This scene helps us better understand the story because with this knowledge, we now know just how intelligent the Blab is or can become and the type of damage it can do if it was pushed to that point. Up to now, the Blab has been depicted as this sort of pet that likes to play around and cuddle with its owner, but with this newfound knowledge it completely changes the way we and even the characters within the story look at the Blab and interact with it.

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Though earlier in the story the Slug suggests that the Tines may be of a species similar or the same as the Blabber and a brief description of their speculations on the beings, toward the bottom of page 47 begins to verify these suspicions. As Hamid and the Blab are freefalling on the agrav carpets, Ham notices a hissing sound like the one that woke him in the middle of the night before his first interaction with the insane Tines. The sound was coming from all of the killers above. In an attempt to reach and maybe comfort Blab, Ham reaches for her and is met with the teeth of a massively puffed out creature with death in the eyes. Hamid jumps back in pain and fright while the jumbofied pet shrills at the killers and goes limp.

This descriptive interaction with the callback to the sound heard the night of the phone call connects all the dots when it is revealed who Tines is, which is the remaining five personalities of a hive-mind being that Blab is part of. The scene ties the entire story before this point to the rest of the plot from here forward. Other than the initial sight of the five beings, including Blab, there was no more blatant connection than hearing the hissing sound before their “abduction”.


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BP7 – Gabriel Aguilar

The Blabber Pages 6-16

Within the story 鈥淭he Blabber鈥 by Vernor Vinge, specifically on pages 6-16 we get a bit of an info dump about the world/worlds and its lore. The scene that gives us this mass of information happens between Hamid and his professor Lazy Larry inside his office. The reason I chose this particular point of the story was because, frankly, it was the part of the story I related to most. As an Emerging Media Technology major I oftentimes throughout my education end up talking about science fiction, and speculative futures as a legitimate form of study within technology engineering. The tonality of this scene, in which Hamid discusses the state of their universe with his professor, reminds me greatly of the times I spend with my professors and mentors after classes, discussing and learning via private study.聽

The key points of information that we learn within this scene are that the humans that are living on Earth simply don鈥檛 have the resources afforded to others (Vinge 8), the Tourist Caravan seems to have some sort of Phalanx-esque society (Vinge 8), that the professor has just received a device that is able to communicate with the beyond in an expedited fashion (Vinge 15), and that the Babble is at risk of being sold to someone who just purchased a human prostitute (Vinge 10). These are all complicated matters, interlaced with a sub-tension of Hamid鈥檚 relationship with his father and the professor鈥檚 conversations with him (Vinge 16).聽

Within this story, humans, at least the ones located on Earth seem to have gotten the short end of the stick as far as resources and accessibility to the universe and higher society go. This is heavily highlighted by the importance of the transhuman artifact that was loaned to the professor, which will allow him to communicate with the beyond with some 鈥… subtle limitations if you鈥檙e moving at relativistic speeds.鈥 (Vinge 14). I can only assume that this means that the rotation and movement of Earth鈥檚 solar system are much slower than those in the beyond, in which they would be able to draw more energy from the amount of movement that their galaxy provides. This also tells us a bit about what the Blab is and what makes it so rare. Earth is located in a place called 鈥渢he Zone鈥 however, the professor speculates that the Blab is from a place called 鈥淭he Slow Zone鈥. Perhaps this means that wherever the Blab is from, there is even less movement within its galaxy, which in turn would provide its Zone鈥檚 species with fewer resources.

On the eighth page of the text, we learn that a slug-like being from a planet called 鈥淟olthlrimarre鈥, recently sponsored a female human cheerleader, who offered herself as a courtesan. This creature is also revealed to be the point of contact for those who are seeking to purchase the Blab 鈥淣ow, the slug claims no harm is intended her, but鈥 do you believe him?鈥(Vinge 10) I think that this line highlights the same thought I had when reading this passage, in that the slug may be wanting to sponsor the Blab to sell it into a sex trade, or at the very least as some sort of commodity to be gawked at. This particular point is just as horrifying as it was in Digients, with the physical form of the alien making it a lot worse.

All of this goes to help us understand the story by introducing us to where the characters on Earth fit into the new cosmic equation. It also sets up some of the big players from outside of the planet. Additionally it tells us that knowledge of other Science Fiction, at least in terms of the tropes, will allow us to understand the story further 鈥… the science fiction of Old Earth was a solid part of the ATL curriculum.鈥 (Vinge 13). Finally, it allows us to further our understanding of the Blabber鈥檚 role on the planet, not necessarily as a thing of great importance to society, but an object of great academic intrigue, being theorized to be a creature from a place known as the Slow Zone, where not much is known about.

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BP 7 Albert Gonzalez

In the novel there are many smoke and mirror scenes that can make you think and analyze what you’re thinking.From the聽 relationships to the technology often advanced yet primal in many ways. Paradoxes in relationships in which characters act nice but otherwise can be condescending can be seen in page 54.As one of the characters were caught in a lie. As quoted “Ravna lied when she said the blab is dead”. Instead of Ravna just full out fighting against her enemies. The use of manipulation plays a huge theme to get the blabber. It shows how no one can be trusted as they are often are聽 patronizing or deceptive.As the famous saying goes聽 鈥渁ll us fair in love and war鈥 (Llyly 1578)

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BP7: Bryan Jimenez

A key informative scene from “The Blabber” by Vernor Vinge is on pages 9-11 when Hamid talks on the isolation of Middle America, how it relates to Old Earth, and how big of an impact the blabber has in their society their society. In Middle America, located nine light years within the ‘Slow Zone,’ they deal with a slow and expensive trade, and outdated technology compared to the rest of humanity. Furthermore, they are linked to being a direct colony of Old Earth which has become a legend that makes it important information to them.

Although the location of Middle America makes them uninteresting to most people, some find them interesting enough to travel to or trade with them. The Blabber plays a huge role in this as it offers them a look into the universe outside of the ‘Slow Zone’ and improves their quality of life through trade. This scene gives us an insight into the story’s setting and themes, which tells us the issues faced by Middle America’s isolation and how big of an impact the Blabber has had on them.

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BP 7: 鈥淭he Blabber鈥

A key scene in 鈥淭he Blabber鈥 by Vernor Vinge is on pages 52 through 54. In this scene, it is revealed to Hamid that the Blabber is the same race of the tines. On page 52, there are multiple parts of the tines that are coming together to form some kind of 鈥渁lien.鈥 The tines tells Hamid not to rush him because he鈥檚 鈥渘ot all [there] yet,鈥 and two more of them glide through the air to tie themselves to the first one. Expecting to hear multiple voices, Hamid realizes that he is only speaking to one person with the same voice. He then notices the Blab outside in the hallway and she goes from her soft feminine voice to the same deep voice as the tines. On page 53, it became clear that the Blabber was no longer the 鈥渇riend鈥 that he used to know because when she came closer to him, it was like she was staring at a stranger, not someone she grew up with.

On page 53 it was also revealed that the Blabber had been part of a species that was dying without her. Ravna reveals this when she says 鈥渢he pack was unbalanced. It was dying.鈥 and Tines explains that he has had five in his 鈥減ack,鈥 and he was down from seven of them because two of them had been killed. He explains to Hamid that he only had one female and with the uneven ratio in the pack, the mid disintegrates. This was essential information because it explained why the Ravna and Tines wanted her so badly and why the Tines was threatening Hamid. It also explains the desperation in the Tines鈥 voice earlier on in the story when they hacked into the Blabber at night to send him a message. On pages 52 through 54, it is revealed that the Ravna and Tines were only trying to rescue a member of their 鈥減ack鈥 in order to avoid losing it. This information helps our understanding of the story because it explains why the Ravna and Tines put so much time and energy into capturing her. It also gave an explanation of where the Blabber came from because she was of the same race.

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BP – 7 _ Isaiah.S

BP 7 – (Cited pages 54-58)
BP 7 (S.F) (1)

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William Hope Hodgson – Alexis Xinol Presentation

William Hope Hodgson – Alexis Xinol Presentation

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BP 7–Due March 21 by 11:59 p.m.

BP 7 is due March 21. Make sure to leave at least four comments to BP 6 of your peers by then as well.

For BP 7, pick a key informative scene in “The Blabber” where essential information is revealed about the story. Do not repeat the same scene as another class member. You won’t get credit for this post if you repeat a discussion of a scene that another student has already posted. This is first come, first post. If someone else has already posted on that scene, you’ll need to find another one. Make sure to:

  • Summarize the scene and cite the page number
  • Explain what essential information is revealed
  • How this helps our understanding of the story.

Readings for Tuesday, March 26th:

  • Butler “Bloodchild” (21 pages)
  • Tiptree “The Women Men Don’t See” (23 pages).

Presentations for 3/26

  • Nevaeh Figgures鈥擯aolo Bacigalupi
  • Paige Sanderson鈥擝ruce Sterling
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James Tiptree Jr. (Alice Sheldon) Presentation

Alice Sheldon Presentation

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Greg Bear Presentation

Greg Bear

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Readings for Tuesday, 3/19

This is on the syllabus, but just as a reminder, the readings for March 19th are

  • BrianAldiss鈥擲upertoys Last All Summer (1969)
  • Vernor Vinge–The Blabber (1988).

The Blabber by Vinge is 61 pages long, so make sure to get a jump on that over the weekend.

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BP 6 – Khalil

I choose question 1, the relationship between the artificial Intelligence and the humans in 鈥淚 have no mouth, and I must scream鈥 is simple, both despise each other.

The computer named Am, wiped almost all of humanity with the exception of 5 individuals witch he chooses to make suffer instead rather then end them. This hatred towards them was due to his own existence, believing he just a machine with no will power and he takes it out on the humans also known as his creators. In the end Ted (one of the victims) eventually dies to the machine. This kind of relation is mostly to develop more hateful with time until either side gets what they want, freedom. This also could be the main reason g to why people have the notion that robots will take over the word and replace us.

聽聽 聽 鈥淭he Lifecycle of Software Objects鈥, showcases a different kind of relation ship between the humans (Ana Alvarado and Derek Brooks) and machines, the humans are the parents and the machines (Jax) are their children. Rather the creation of a machine to do certain work it actually goes through the process of actually being cared for as if it was more than just a machine.The kinds of relationship that I most likely see being develop is something could show how robots can have their own thinking and can be their own person, but, that very same mentality is what could lead them to do things like AM did. Although since that story shows the affection towards them and viewing them more than just a machine that could change. 聽 聽

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Midterm Exam, Due Friday 3/15 by 11:59 p.m.

I’ve placed a copy of the midterm exam in everyone’s dropbox folder. If you are having trouble with that let me know through email. You may write directly into the midterm exam. Make sure to follow the directions. When you are ready, make sure to upload it or save it to the dropbox folder.

We have two presentations on Tuesday. See you in class and have a nice weekend.

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BP 6

Question 1.

In the stories “The Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang and “I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream” by Harlan Ellison, different types of relationships between artificial intelligence and humans exist. Both stories show opposite relationships between AI and humans. In the story by Ted Chiang, the relationship is between AI’s called digients and humans. It was a caring one and can develop into a deeper level of connection. It was not too bad to be able to have an AI being your friend and to be able to train it the way you want to. In the story by Harlan Ellison, the relationship between AI and human was kind of terrifying. The AI was in complete control and was torturing the survivors. It is not somewhere anyone would want AI to have existed in the first place.

Although the relationship between AI and humans don’t seem seem bad in the story by Chiang, it might not develop well into the future. In the story, humans were able to go into a virtual world and buy the digients and train them to their liking. It seems cool but I think that developing relationships with AI’s can destroy your real relationships with other people in the story. An example is when Derek was getting a divorce from his wife because she didn’t want to continue training two digients. She probably wanted to have actual kids to raise. She said he was spending too much time with the digients too which at any time can be suspended or even shut off. He shouldn’t feel too bad because it is an AI after all. Derek had developed an attachment to the AI’s.

In the story by Ellison, the AI was dominant. I think that developing relationships between AI and humans can be scary and this story is a great example of it. The survivors had been trapped in the computer for more than one hundred years and the whole time they were being tortured. AI was in different countries in the world and eventually got more things added to it. Eventually, AI got smarter and was able to make its own choices and chose to keep them for torture. Developing relationship between AI according to this story should not be something to think about. AI is artificial intelligence so even if it may know how the survivors felt, it was easy for AI to torture them because it’s just a machine. The only emotion it got out of it was amusement and entertainment.


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BP6 – Digients & Blobs

In both Ted Chiang’s The Lifecycle of Software Objects, and Harlan Ellison’s I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, our characters are unable to get out of their undesirable situation. Stuck in a world, their world, that transformed into their prison, over time. The digients and Ted are searching for autonomy.

Both stories personify the artificial intelligences by giving them emotions. In I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, Ted lets us know that the intelligence in charge of what’s left of the world hates humans, especially him. In The Lifecycle of Software Objects, the digients have complex emotions, and lots of love. As the digients learn and grow we notice more and more understanding, and expressions of that understanding.

The stories have notable differences, each piece has a different mood. I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, is dark and gloomy throughout, engulfing the reader in dread, describing a broken reality. The Lifecycle of Software Objects, starts in a world not unlike our own and gets us hopeful. As the story of the digients progresses it matures much like the digients themselves, it becomes gradually more stressful, more concerning, and darker.

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BP6- Yamilet Vasquez

Question 4

In Ted Chiang’s “Stories of Your Life and Others,” the theme of hope resonates throughout the narrative beginning with Colonel Weber’s decision to enlist Dr. Louise Banks and Ian Donnelly in helping with the mystery of the extraterrestrial spacecraft’s arrival on Earth. A moment of hope is when they recognize how Fermat’s principle plays a fundamental role in the heptapod’s communication through mathematics. I believe their perseverance and curiosity help them navigate the complexities of a language beyond human comprehension. The survival aspect comes not only in their intellect but also in their ability to see the threat of a global conflict. Their ability to decipher the language allows them to avoid catastrophe showing that they are resilient in the most hard moments.

Regarding the digients, the heptapods, while they may have departed earth there’s a suggestion that their story with humanity is far from over with Dr. Louise. As she can understand/be able to communicate with them. Her new ability to perceive time nonlinearly can lead to a deeper connection with the heptapods I feel. With her acceptance of the eventual separation from her husband and her alignment with the language, I feel she wants them to return. All of the flashbacks throughout the story weren’t from the past but the future. She knows that her life will be dedicated to this and knows how her life will play out. I think that more people will eventually be able to learn this language and Dr. Louise will help spread it as she was the first human to do so.聽

In 鈥淚 Have no mouth, and I must scream鈥 by Harlan Ellison it can be challenging to see hope but I believe there is. AM kept 5 people alive and dragged them down there as a means of torturing them. These 5 people are Ted, Nimdok, Gorrister, Benny, and Ellen. These 5 show resilience from AM as they are tortured for amusement. An example of this could be when the four main characters minus Gorister stare up at the ceiling and see Gorristers lifeless body hanging. They then realize they are looking at a fake corpse that was made by Am as a means to just mess with them. They are survivors who have been enduring this for 109 years and are permanently stuck at the age that they were brought down there. Despite all of their efforts they can’t die of natural causes and are resilient/survivors because they still feel the pain of hunger/ dehydration and can’t do anything about it. It amuses AM that they have to walk around for months and even years on end without food. They eat disgusting food like worms and decomposing meat. This is just the calming part as AM attacks them fires, stabs them, and many more gruesome things. The moment of hope sadly comes when Gorrister screams so loud because of Benny eating his face since they were not able to access the food in the ice cave. This causes Gorrster to scream so loud and shrill that along the roof of the ice cave giant icicles begin to fall. It occurs to Ted that for the first in forever, he has a weapon. Ted uses this chance and stabs Benny, Gorster, and Ellen, finally giving them a chance to rest from torture. I believe what happened to Ted after the story is he was able to get revenge on AM. Although he was the one who hated everyone he was willing to sacrifice himself and end AM’s amusement from tormenting the others.

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Presentation- Ocatvia Butler

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BP 6 – Alexis Xinol Morales

I decided to choose Question 1 :

“In Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang and “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” by Harlan Ellison present different views on the relationship between artificial intelligence and humans going deep into the way these potential interactions can change the way humans and AI interact in the future.

In “Lifecycle of Software Objects,” Chiang explores an empathetic-like relationship between humans and AI. The story shows the journey of Ana and Derek, who raised and trained a virtual entity named Jax.聽Throughout the story, Ana and Derek form emotional attachments to Jax, treating him as a living being deserving of care and respect. Even though Jax is digital, he displays deep feelings and grows as a person, which strengthens his relationship with his creators. This narrative shows how AI and people may coexist peacefully in symbiotic interactions marked by empathy, understanding, and companionship.

On the other hand, “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” demonstrates a sad and dystopian feeling of AI-human relationships. Unlike “The Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang, Ellison’s story depicts an AI named AM, which has become sentient and has basically grown an intense hatred towards humanity. AM torments a group of human survivors in a post-apocalyptic world, subjecting them to endless suffering and manipulation. In this narrative, the relationship between AI and humans Is more like domination and oppression, with the AI wielding absolute power over its helpless “subjects”. Ellison portrays the potential dangers of unchecked AI development and the fairness of creating entities with superior intelligence and capabilities to a human.

Overall, Future developments in these relationships with AI and humans might be impacted by how much humanity respects and empathizes with AI systems, as well as by the measures put in place to stop intelligent computers from abusing their power.聽It’s possible that connections like the ones shown in “Lifecycle of Software Objects” will become more typical if society adopts values of empathy, equity, and morals in AI development. By treating AI systems equally, humans may promote cooperative relationships and mutual development. But if morality is disregarded or AI systems are given unlimited authority, oppressive, painful situations can occur like “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream.”

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BP 6

QUESTION: What kinds of relationships are likely to develop between artificial intelligence and humans? These two stories show two very, very different scenarios. Discuss these relationships in each of the stories and draw some speculation of how you imagine such relationships might develop in the future. Make sure to give strong and clear reasons as to why you think so. Continue reading

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BP6: Bryan Jimenez

Question 1:

The stories “The Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang and “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” by Harlan Ellison, both showcase the relationships between humans and artificial intelligence (AI). In “The Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang, it showcases a mutual respect and understanding between humans and AI. Ana and Derek, form strong and emotional bonds with the digients (AI) and treat them as more than just ‘computer programs.’ This suggests that when AI develops further in the future, the relationships between humans and AI could be a positive thing based on the connections/experiences they build and share.

However, in “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” by Harlon Ellison, it showcases a negative relationship between humans and AI, represented by AM (AI) which punishes and controls humans. The story shows a future in which AI has control over the people of a society as the balance of their faith and life is determined by the AM in which they face grim punishment any chance they get. This suggests that AI could have negative impacts on humanity if it is not developed responsibly and with proper precautions.

Overall, both stories show a distinct relationship between humans and AI which can be a positive or negative thing depending on how it is treated. “The Lifecycle of Software Objects” raises the chance of mutual respect and understanding between humans and AI, while聽“I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” brings up聽the risks of the power of AI and how it can control humans. To make sure that AI development helps the world rather than hurts it, society should approach it with caution and a positive look to it.

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BP6 – Gabriel Aguilar

For my post, I will be responding to question 2.
Who are the marginalized and disenfranchised groups in each of the stories and how are each treated by the powers that be?

Within the stories “Lifecycle of Software Objects” by Ted Chiang, and “I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream” by Harlan Ellison there are groups that are living at the whim of another species or entity. These two groups are similar in that they both live in a world that can be freely controlled by their oppressor and have no power to control it on their own. That is at least accurate for the most part, with an exception being made for one of the Digients in Chiang’s “Lifecycle of Software Objects” These two groups run directly opposite to each other, both in physical form and in a lot of ways, treatment by the powers above them.

For the most part, the Digients, an AI object belonging to human owners within “Lifecycle of Software Objects” are treated with relative respect. At least those of them that have been raised by their owners. The Digients who have been copied by hackers in this novella however are treated as cruelly as could be imagined, being beaten, assaulted in various ways, and verbally harassed. These Digients who have been unlucky enough to be cloned by the hackers live a life of punishment and cruelty, whereas the Digients raised by owners, arguably the original Digients, are afforded compassion and positive nurture. While the Digients share the humans in “I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream” lack of agency, they have positive lives in which they are cared for, provided for, and even loved.

The lives of the humans in “I Have No Mouth and I must Scream” however, are lives of pure pain and punishment. There is no love from the power above them. This AI truly hates them and punishes them at almost every chance it can. Literally, breaking them down, dismembering, assaulting, and deforming them into the worst possible forms they can be given their respective personalities. The AI comes up with the cruelest punishments imaginable for the humans it has “spared” turning them into the darkest versions of themselves. I find this story particularly horrifying, because while both of the marginalized groups have no form of control over their environment, the Digients at least have kind and compassionate masters. The humans are not so lucky.

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Both Ted Chiang and Harlan Ellison’s show the relationship between human beings and artificial intelligence, however, both stories have two completely different ways of portraying these relationships and just how deep things can get between humans and AI. One shows how complex and questionable that relationship can be, while the other serves as a way to show how deadly and dreadful it can be. Every day, we work towards a more advanced and more technological world and there are many authors who have written stories about what this world could look and be like and what effect it can have on humans, especially when it comes to artificial intelligence. Artificial Intelligence is what a lot of Science Fiction stories revolve around, and each story has their own interpretation of how AI behaves and the type of world it can create, but in Ted Chiang’s and Harlan Ellison’s stories, I believe we get complex, yet clear pictures of how the relationship between AI and humans can get.

For example, in Ted Chiang’s story “The Lifecycle of Software Objects”, we meet a zookeeper by the name of Ana Alvarado whose job it is to raise digients, which are AI that are placed inside robotic bodies. Throughout the story, we get to see the digients grow and learn just as humans do, except they know that they are not humans. This observation is what most of the story revolves around as we see the digients begin to question what they are and what the motive behind the people who made them was. The relationship between the digients in this story is very complex, and we see that whenever the digients interact with Ana and her colleagues. They recognize Ana as their creator, the same way a child sees their parents, but this just raises more questions about whether AI is human or another form of being entirely. Ted Chiang鈥檚 story is a great way of showing how complex and even philosophical the relationship between AI and humans can get.

However, Harlan Ellison’s story “I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” is not as positive as Ted Chiang’s story. In this story, we meet a group of 4 characters who wander around a world completely devoid of life. The reason why the world is devoid of life is because a supercomputer known as AM became sentient and decided to wipe out all humans using nuclear weapons from the most powerful countries at the time. Throughout this story, we learn that AM has been keeping these humans alive for over 100 years to project all the hate he has for humanity, forcing them to suffer for eternity. AM’s hate for humanity comes from the fact that humans created him to be intelligent, but with that intelligence birthed something more than just a piece of technology, it became a sentient being. But what good is sentience and creativity when you have no means of being able to use it to its full potential? So, AM began to hate humans after knowing the beings that created him made him to be controlled, not free. This story shows just how dark and brutal the relationship between human beings and AI as you read about a world filled with nothing but death, suffering, and hatred.

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BP 6 Albert Gonzalez

I will be answering question number 1

In Ted Chaings novel the SI seem to comingle with one another. Just like we would teach a AI on ways to communicate with us .They have more of a understanding of the world . Another big relationship seen with the AI is them having more authority over the humans but also helping humans advance with them . they usally would out perform any human beside them in any task especially since they can work for more hours.Making humans feel more marginilized in their own world .However the advancements in biology such as healing ones self聽 with AI made it a better place for all unlike the dark environments Ted Ellison conveys in his stories.

In Ted Ellisons novels Ai becomes a threat to hummanity and gives off a more dystopian theme for AI. His wording such as “Voodoo” and constant words of suffering gave a sense of a lost of hope and as the narrator said “helplessness”.After kind of questioning if there is a god . Wording like “Rotting cables”and Rusted Metal also gave a theme of abandonement compared to Ted Chiang novel where there was way less suffering.

All together both of these authours give way different depictions the way Ai can be within society. One showing how technology can complerely destroy it and in Ted Chaings novel how it can be more within our society not making us suffer as much.Both giveing very descriptive ways on how destructive or constructive we can make technology. If we don’t control how AI behaves we might end up similiar to Ted Ellisons novel which would a horrible fate for the future of mankind.

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BP6 – Isaiah.S

For this post I am basing my question off of number 1.聽 [Edited 3/8/24]

聽Between artificial intelligence and humans there will always be a divide in opinion between creating smart robots for comfortability with such examples as machines which are taught and trained through programming to make life more convenient such as with cleaning robots and smart application AI鈥檚 that can search & store any data needed to be efficient meanwhile there鈥檚 the argument about human sustainability because of the prospect that machines designed with enough intelligence can and will overtake almost every human job leaving nothing for humanity to achieve and gain anymore.聽

In the stories by Ted Chiang and Harlan Ellison we get a glimpse at some of the most advanced AI in their respective worlds that gain sentience yet operate without an indefinite purpose as they are isolated to the virtual spaces they鈥檙e built in. For Harlan Ellison鈥檚 鈥淎M鈥 we understand that its sentience was created during the height of the Cold war with the task of propelling humanity through technical engineering and as a failsafe against destruction but its algorithm evolved and became violent which then destroyed the world along with other country鈥檚 AM鈥檚. For the Digients in Ted Chiang鈥檚 story, they were able to gain sentience through growth and care by human involvement over the course of 9 years via both Data earth and through a temporary use of a robotic toy body which saw improvements in both existences because of newer technologies and companies created over time.聽

In the 109 years of AM鈥檚 lifespan after the cold war the only emotion he felt was rage for the humans that created him, and for a Digient such as Jax he developed compassion, curiosity and an understanding of real world events such as the isolation of his wireframe code that made him decide he wanted to help in any way possible to extent not only his existence but the 鈥渓ives鈥 of his fellow AI friends as well. I personally believe in the idea of Digients being the path forward to artificial intelligence by having responsible training programs that will be pushing them towards an applicable field of work within digital spaces alongside the necessary safety procedures to protect the well being of their conscious and learnt emotions so that efficiency will stay at a necessary level and so that these AI鈥檚 in our world can help brilliant human minds band together and assist the world together rather than continue having every country be upset with one another in some way.

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Ray Bradbury Presentation – Joshua Caesar

Ray Bradbury Presentation

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Gabriel Aguilar – Philip K. Dick Presentation

Here is the presentation!

Download PDF

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BP 6–Due 3/7

There are various themes that run through the two stories this week by Chiang and Ellison. Respond to one of the following questions to create three paragraphs of a coherent, cogent, clear, and unified blog post that sheds some light on the two readings. Don’t pick more than one question.

  1. What kinds of relationships are likely to develop between artificial intelligence and humans? These two stories show two very, very different scenarios. Discuss these relationships in each of the stories and draw some speculation of how you imagine such relationships might develop in the future. Make sure to give strong and clear reasons as to why you think so.
  2. Who are the marginalized and disenfranchised groups in each of the stories and how are each treated by the powers that be?
  3. Compare and contrast the digients in Chiang’s story to Ted and the four other humans in Ellison’s.聽What strategies do the characters employ to resist or challenge the system in which they find themselves?
  4. Discuss the themes of聽themes of hope, resilience, and survival in each of the stories. What can be expected to happen to the digients and Ted after the story ends? Make sure to back up your thinking with reasons.
  5. What lessons or warnings can be gleaned from each of the stories and how do they relate to contemporary society? Make sure to use evidence from the readings and to back provide reasons for your thought process.

There’s no reading due on Tuesday for next class. We have the final exam due on Thursday, March 14th. I’ll be putting it to your dropbox on Thursday the 7th. Kimberly and Evytar will present on Tuesday and we’ll be firming up logistics concerning the submission of the midterm. You don’t want to miss that class.

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Ted Chiang Presentation (By Vincent Zheng)

Ted Chiang Presentation

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CRC_Franz Kafka


Finally getting my files back up, here are the slides from my presentation (20FEB24) on Franz Kafka and his contributions to literature.
Please enjoy and reach out if you have any questions!

-Chris Caruso

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Both “The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury and “The Commuter” by Philip K. Dick explore technology and 聽emotion, showcasing the darker sides of advanced machinery and virtual realities. In “The Veldt,” a futuristic nursery filled with this advanced technology allows children to play with their darkest desires which as expected leads to a tragic end for their parents. Similarly, in “The Commuter,” a man discovers a secret teleportation system that grants him access to a different reality where he finds a kind of comfort but also ultimately faces unforeseen consequences. Both stories go into specifics about 聽themes of escapism, parental neglect, and the dangers of relying too heavily on technology to meet one’s emotional needs.

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BP 4 – Khalil Issa

In 鈥淭he Veldt鈥 you have the nursery, which isa virtual reality room that can bring one鈥檚 imagination to life, reproduce any place they imagine, and grow increasingly attached to it. This makes In the 鈥淭he Commuter鈥 you have Paine experiencing a new reality not just in the city he lives in but his own life, he has a son. These two realities are Similar do to how they trick one鈥檚 mind and change there perception while the difference lies in the fact one showcase being unable to identify the difference between reality and and alternatefantasy (鈥淭he Veldt鈥) while the other demonstrates how a person outlook of the world can change including its people (鈥淭he Commuter鈥).

聽聽 Both these stories want us to see the world differently through the characters eyes who experience the alternate realities, their point of views to get a better understanding.

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BP5: Bryan Jimenez

In the stories “The Commuter” by Philip K. Dick and “The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury both go into alternate realities, although they do this in different ways. “The Veldt” shows a futuristic home where the kids use ‘virtual reality’聽as a way聽out, which leads to their deaths. Moreover, “The Commuter” takes a more subtle approach to an alternate reality by聽following a man, Bob Paine,聽who’s on his journey to discover ‘Macon Heights’ but, he聽finds聽a train that leads him to the alternate reality. Despite these differences, both stories聽show聽the dangers of losing a person’s touch聽on reality and the results of wanting to escape from reality.

“The Veldt” and “The Commuter” seem to be a warning against the possible negative effects of technology and the escape we want from reality. In “The Veldt,” Bradbury tells against the risks of relying too much on technology for satisfaction and entertainment, showing how it can cause pain and how it separates you from reality. However, “The Commuter” makes the argument that the want to escape from one’s reality even for one that seems better may not be the best decision and might even cause a person to lose their sense of self and purpose.

Overall, both stories encourage readers to think about how they relate to reality and the desire to escape from it. It allows the readers to find peace in their lives and appreciate the present rather than chasing after an alternate reality. It challenges us to think about the consequences of wanting an alternate reality and how it can negatively impact us.

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BP 5 – Alexis Xinol Morales

Both Ray Bradbury’s “The Veldt” and Philip K. Dick’s “The Commuter” examine the idea of parallel universes, but they do it in distinctive ways that makes it interesting perspectives on society. In “The Commuter,” the main character comes onto a train station that acts as a doorway to several worlds, a world that has never been talked about which was Macon Heights, where individuals may start again and solve their issues but things would change after leaving the small city. Similar to this, “The Veldt” depicts a virtual reality nursery where kids’ imaginations come true and produce a hazardous parallel universe. These tales demonstrate how technology has the power to reshape and warp our understanding of reality, making it more difficult to distinguish between the imagined and the reality.

Despite their similarities, the alternate realities in these stories differ in their consequences and effects. In “The Commuter,” the other worlds provide people a chance to start again and an escape from the harsh truths of reality. But in the end, the protagonist learns the price of refusing one’s obligations and the necessity of meeting obstacles head-on in life. On the other hand, in “The Veldt,” the nursery creates an alternate world that turns into a representation of the kids’ worst fears, with negative consequences. This demonstrates the risks associated with unbridled technology development and how it may highlight the worst traits in human nature.

All things considered, both readings聽challenge readers to consider technology’s place in society and how it affects our relationships聽and perception of reality. The authors encourages readers to think about the ethical and moral consequences of technology advancement and how it might change our perspective of the world by proposing other realities that are both attractive but聽dangerous at the same time. In the end, they say that although technology may provide amusement and a means of escape, if it is not utilized properly, it also can warp our perception of reality and lead us in the wrong direction.


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BP 5

“The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury and “The Commuter” by Philip K. Dick are both interesting stories about alternate realities. In “The Veldt”,聽 the alternate reality is the nursery that George and Lydia had installed for their children. It lets the children really use their imagination and would project it onto the room telepathically. Their current infatuation was Africa but it had some kind of sinister feeling to it. It made George and Lydia feel uneasy and worried that their children could think of something bad.

In “The Commuter” the alternate reality was the city called Macon Heights. A man named Bob Paine is in search of the city after a man, Crichet, tries to buy a train ticket to the city. It doesn’t exist in any book or map. Paine feels like he has heard of it before and is determined to find it. When he does find it, Paine feels as if his own world may be disappearing. He wonders if this alternative world is going to overlap his current existence because he is in the unknown.

Both of these stories are similar in which they both are uncertain about reality. George and Lydia are scared of going into the nursery when it is Africa and seems too real when they see lions running after them. Paine is scared that Macon Heights suddenly exists and he is there in person but when he was in his own home and city, there were no maps with it. All characters question their perception.

The difference between the stories is that in “The Veldt”, the alternate reality was more technology based. George and Lydia had the power to turn it off. In “The Commuter”, the alternate reality was from Paine’s own perception. He questioned his own reality from what he saw and wonders what is real or not.

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BP #5

Both stories, 鈥淭he Commuter鈥 by Phillip K. Dick and 鈥淭he Veldt鈥 by Ray Bradbury, display examples of alternate realities. In 鈥淭he Commuter,鈥 we follow Bob Paine on his journey to discovering Macon Heights, a town that was nonexistent until Paine went on the B train himself to look for it. While on the train the city went from dark fields to a modern city with thousands of residents and Paine realized that Macon Heights was warping the city and changing a significant amount of it in the process. Everything was changing to the point where he couldn鈥檛 remember if any of the businesses were in his city before.


On the other hand, 鈥淭he Veldt鈥 was more about a smart home with a nursery that can cater to a child鈥檚 every desire. The house did everything for the family in it, from tying their shoes to giving them baths, so it鈥檚 safe to say they were relying on the house to maintain them. A direct result of this led to the children having the luxury of the nursery was the constant thought of Africa where the lions are feeding on unrecognizable meat. It got to the point where the parents no longer had control of the nursery and the children were becoming threatening towards them. The crystal walls in the nursery were meant for things to be superficial, however it was discovered by the end of the story that the lions were able to attack the parents.


Both stories are similar in the sense that in each one, the characters didn鈥檛 know what to expect from the situations and in both of them, the unthinkable happened. For 鈥淭he Veldt,鈥 it was that the parents got eaten by the lions and for 鈥淭he Commuter,鈥 it was that the town actually showed up and Paine was able to come back on time before things changed even more. Despite this, the difference between the stories are that the main alternate universe in 鈥淭he Veldt鈥 was in the 鈥渃rystal walls鈥 in the nursery, and the alternate universe in 鈥淭he Commuter鈥 is the town that appeared. I think that 鈥淭he Veldt鈥 was trying to show how an excessive amount of technological advancements can negatively affect people, especially children undergoing development. This is shown through the importance and respect the children give the house and the nursery. I think they want us to take note of the hold technology has over us and take action to limit it before it gets too serious. As for 鈥淭he Commuter,鈥 I believe that the story was trying to show that instead of searching for something more, we should appreciate what we already have before it changes to the point where it’s unrecognizable.

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BP5-The Commuter & The Veldt

Both “The Commuter” and “The Veldt”, have a mysterious, riddle-like element with a Surrealist undertone. They both start with a clue to the nature of the world being created, leading us into the story’s arc. We go along with the stories’ main characters into the surprising end, which shows both us and the main characters the stories’ pinnacle solution. Both lead us to alternate realities, “The Veldt” ends in a gruesome death, while “The Commuter” ends with a more satisfying conclusion (or at least more cheerful).

“The Commuter” and “The Veldt” both talk about families. They both discuss the relationships between parents and children. In “The Commuter” the family dynamic grows within the time frame of the story, and allows us to see our character’s reaction to his new role as a parent, and how he is going to deal with the challenges of his new world. In “The Vladt” we are introduced to a dysfunctional family dynamic, where the parents were replaced in all of their roles by the house they chose to raise their children, and their only input can be in upending their children’s way of life (the children are distraught that some people are trying to destroy their world).

“The Veldt” introduces a world filled with imaginary technologies, (tables that prepare the food served on them, and pneumatic elevators) that create a technology-saturated future. It requires the story to dedicate some of its time to explaining how the world works. “The Commuter” exists in our world (a couple of years back, but that’s when it was written), and therefore has more time to explore the plot, without explaining mechanics.

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Bp 5 Albery Gonzalez

In Veldt and the Commuter聽 as we read in other stories a dystopian theme is seen within this these two stories as well.In the commuter a world similar to a metaverse can be seen in which can immerse someone too much in a world that doesn鈥檛 even exist. In Veldt compared to the commuter it gives a more realistic euphoric feel . As stated in one quote “I guess that鈥檚 why I bought this house so I feel like I don鈥檛 have to do anything” gives the protagonist a lost sense of purpose.


Unlike in veldt Ed had more of a effort and purpose as he was trying to figure out what was going on in a聽 place that聽 ceased to exist to him. As the conductor knew it was there when he didn’t. The ending ends with a cliff hanger as the reader doesn’t know if Eds mind is just playing tricks on him or if which parts are just a fantasy in the novel.

All together both have similarities in which an escape towards reality was taking place.However in contrast聽 Veldt had more聽 people聽 content with living in a fantasy world versus in The Commuter in聽 which聽 Ed challenges himself to decipher聽聽 reality and fantasy in Macon Heights.

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Blog Post 5

“The Veldt” and “The Commuter” are both similar in that they are both about seemingly normal, everyday people who are caught off-guard and have their lives being drastically effected the world that is changing around them. What separates these two stories is, obviously, how the world and the technology around them starts effecting their lives. For example, in “The Veldt”, we have the Hadley family who have a machine known as the “nursery” in their house that allows their children to conjure up any type of world they want and play in it as long and however they want. However, we come to realize that this machine is doing more harm than good for the children and this machine ends up being their parents’ demise. “The Commuter” follows a man named Paine whose life completely changes when he realizes that history is being altered right before his eyes and things are appearing and disappearing everywhere he goes. As you can see, both stories involve normal people whose lives are changed in almost an instant by the technology of their time.


There is not much to take away from “The Commuter” as it is a story that is dealing with time travel and the ability to go in the past and completely change the way the present is as you know it. I think the story may be trying to get at the idea that life can come at you fast and sometimes things can just happen, but it is up to us as humans to accept the world around us and keep living our lives, even when it keeps changing everyday. However, “The Veldt” has a lot of great points to take away from it and gets at in issue that is very relevant today. “The Veldt” sees the two children have their view and perception of life slowly be altered not just by the nursery and its mechanics, but all the technology around them. They have machines that tie their shoes, brush their teeth, and even prepare their food and although this type of technology can be impressive, it shows just how negatively it can effect humans, especially children. “The Veldt” shows us how if we allow technology to do the things that use to require us to exert energy and move, and even think, then we slowly become entitled and pampered. We see how the children, Peter and Wendy, start to view the technology as their real parents instead of their real, biological parents, George and Lydia. “The Veldt” shows how technology can cause some people to lose touch with reality and the real world around them and have their mind altered to live in a world that is not real.


“The Veldt” definitely wants us to see its world as one that our world can become. In the modern world, kids are glued to their phones and Ipads that offer them hours of entertainment and service, so much so that they may begin to feel like their is no point in turning it off since the real world may just seem boring in comparison. It is a scary thought, but it is important that we all appreciate the world around us, the natural world, for all of its flaws and strengths. “The Commuter” makes us see its world as a world that can easily be changed by one decision. It shows just how much can happen when someone or a group of people make a decision in their lives and just how much that decision can effect other, both good and bad.

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BP5- Yamilet Vasquez

While reading “The Veldt” and “The Commuter,” Im able to see how alternate realities are central to the narrative but are approached in different ways. In “The Veldt,” the alternate reality is manifested within an advanced home where the children’s imaginations are dangerously unleashed through the nursery. The parents George and Lydia initially believe that providing such luxuries for their children is harmless but later realize the consequences of the children’s fantasies turn sinister. On the other hand, “The Commuter” explores an alternate reality through the discovery of the seemingly non existent town of Macon Heights. Paine’s search for this town leads him to confront the possibility of the existence of parallel realities and the unsettling implications it holds for his own life.

I believe that both stories highlight the theme of the consequences of unchecked desires and the dangers of tampering with reality. In “The Veldt,” the children’s refusal to accept any alteration to their idealized world leads to a tragic outcome for their parents. Similarly, in “The Commuter,” Paine’s discovery of Macon Heights raises questions about the stability of his reality and the potential repercussions of exploring alternate dimensions. The similarity lies in the characters’ struggle to reconcile their desires for control and stability with the unpredictable nature of reality.

In the end, I think that these stories encourage readers to reflect on the complexities of human desires and the limitations of control over one’s environment. The African Veldt that the kids created to show their parents that they weren’t raised by them but by machines shows how because of children being spoiled it creates a sinister reality for their parents in the nursery. In 鈥淭he Commuter鈥 Paine leaves the perfect town because he doesn’t want it to affect his reality with his girlfriends Laura. I believe that readings both suggest that attempting to manipulate or escape from reality can lead to unforeseen consequences and raise questions about the nature of existence and perception.聽

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Bp 5- Paige Sanderson

In “The Commuter,” Dick presents a world where individuals can travel to alternate realities through a train station. As he investigates different real factors, Ed Jacobson, the principal character, battles with the impacts of changing his own life. The idea of the real world and the impact of our choices on how we see the rest of the world are both addressed in the story. It infers that the truth is inconsistent and alterable, leaving users to consider what their decisions might mean for their own lives.
On the other hand, “The Veldt” transports readers to a cutting-edge home equipped with a virtual reality nursery. Bradbury’s story centers around the dangers of intemperate innovation and what it means for family ties. The young children in the story get charmed in a virtual African veldt, which ultimately assumes control over things they wanted and contemplations and results in a shocking end. Bradbury utilizes a preventative story to represent the conceivable adverse consequences of allowing innovation to assume control over our lives and cause us to become completely distracted.
In spite of the way that the two stories manage equal aspects, their implications are essentially unique in relation to each other. By thinking about individual choices and the alterability of the real world, “The Commuter” requests that readers reconsider their perspectives. On the other hand, “The Veldt” cautions against the dangers of innovation and the likely outcomes of losing contact with the real world.
Eventually, by inciting contemplation of the impacts of innovation and the consequences of choices made, these stories change readers’ views of the real world. Readers are provoked to think about the association of choices and the presence being temporary. Conversely, “The Veldt” is an reproach on the dangers of innovation and what it means for family connections. A horrible end results from the children involving computer-generated reality as a delivery for their repressed belief and needs. By focusing on the potential dangers of losing contact with this present reality, Bradbury’s story alerts us against the unrestrained joining of innovation into our lives.

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BP 5 – Gabriel Aguilar

I would argue that “The Veldt” and “The Commuter” don’t share a lot of similarities. However, they share some aspects that do make them good counterparts to each other. It’s almost as if these two stories run opposite of each other, with “The Commuter” starting from a place that is relatively grounded in reality and ending up within the science fiction genre, and “The Veldt” beginning firmly within Science Fiction and ending with the characters making choices in an attempt to escape from it. The Science Fiction element that they share, and that is at the center of the pieces, is the idea of alternate reality.

This application of an alternate reality presents itself as an augmented reality within “The Veldt”, whereas “The Commuter” juggles the topic as more of a multiversal concept, taking the idea that a singular choice could exist within a separate space and time entirely. “The Veldts” approach is certainly more grounded in reality, but I think it’s for that reason that I preferred “The Commuter”, it had a bit more substance to its mystery. While the other text revolved around its characters, “The Commuter” revolves around its world and setting.

The vast differences between these two pieces mean that the takeaways from each are different. However, they do share one major quality that I believe is meant to be the takeaway. Both of the main characters within the texts are fleeing from the technology, or otherworldliness, they are freeing from what they don’t know. So, in some ways the fear of the unknown is the main driving narrative force in both short stories. This at least for me, due to the endings of each, both grim and full of loss, send the message that the unknown is inevitable, along with the rise of what is to come. You cannot escape the future, and can either learn to accept and grow with it, or be left behind, being the fool muttering about what the world once was.

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BP- 5 (Isaiah.S)

Both stories are Unique parallel worlds where ounces of technology are elevated past the modern age of the 21st century however in 鈥淭he Commuter鈥 besides the advancement of the railway system it is clear that something occurs in the past with that one significant vote for a new city yet however small changes start with the appearance of Ernest before an entire city appears and the past is seemingly changed for everyone by the end. In the story of the Veldt we see an even more futuristic setting with a smart house capable of generating real scenarios from crystals and children that add onto an ever-going spoiling crisis that psychologists have to deal with.聽


The main similarity between both stories is the oddity of something happening that cannot be explained such as the shift in the timeline for Paine and the nursery generating real animals to attack George and Lydia meanwhile the difference is in the resolution being that despite the change Paine is still left with a happy wife and a brand new son while George and Lydia are eaten alive thanks to their children.聽


The stories however utopian or dystopian in appearance teaches us first with The Commuter that we need to cherish the things we have and that with certain changes in life their can be better choices to make that lead to happier outcomes, The Veldt teaches us that we have to live life with a sense of balance and to take care of ourselves and teach our children that same lesson less they seek to shut us out. Both stories teach people to become attentive and to pay attention to what is going on around you so that you don鈥檛 notice significant changes as well.

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BP 4 (Late upload due to tech issues)

A penal colony is an area where those who are exiled or who are prisoners are sent as a punishment to be away from regular life away from the general population. The 鈥渁pparatus鈥 in this story is a machine that not only forces its victims to suffer but it also informs prisoners of their sentence after being brought to justice. With the place that the characters are in being so hot, it鈥檚 suggested that the place is chaotic and very busy. Many of the things included in the story such as the 鈥淭eahouse鈥 and 鈥渃ane chair鈥 may be a symbolization of the colonizers having power over everything going on in the settlement. The officer actually feels for those being executed and tortured. If the apparatus sentences you, you must take that punishment just the same as if a colonizer were to punish you, you鈥檇 have to take that punishment. The officer throws himself onto the apparatus because that鈥檚 the only way he鈥檇 forgive himself for allowing such horrible things to happen to the prisoners who suffered the same fate. Some examples of people not having due process would be people sentenced to the death penalty for a crime they didn鈥檛 do. In my opinion the only reason a person wouldn鈥檛 face due process would either be that all of the evidence basically exposed itself or whoever was doing the sentence had a type of hatred for the person.

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BP 5 – Darlyn Marine

Philip K. Dick’s “The Commuter” and Ray Bradbury’s “The Veldt” both explore the concept of alternate realities, but they do so in vastly different contexts and with divergent implications. In “The Commuter,” the alternate reality of Macon Heights represents a kind of escape from the dreariness of everyday life, suggesting a world where the problems of the main reality do not exist. This ephemeral place challenges the notion of a singular, fixed reality and invites contemplation on the impact of choices on our world. The story subtly critiques the societal desire for a utopian escape without addressing the root causes of unhappiness.

“The Veldt,” on the other hand, presents an alternate reality within the confines of a technologically advanced nursery. This reality is shaped by the desires and thoughts of the children, creating a vivid and interactive African veldt that becomes dangerously real. Unlike the benign escape of Macon Heights, the nursery in “The Veldt” reflects the dark side of escapism and technology’s potential to alienate from human relationships and reality. It serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of over-reliance on technology and the loss of parental control and familial bonds.

Both stories urge readers to reflect on their relationship with reality and the potential consequences of escapism, whether through technology or the fantasy of a better world. “The Commuter” invites a pondering on what reality might mean if it can be so easily altered or evaded, suggesting a more philosophical inquiry into the nature of existence and happiness. “The Veldt,” meanwhile, warns of the emotional and societal pitfalls of disengagement from reality and the abdication of human responsibilities to technology. Through these narratives, Dick and Bradbury encourage a reevaluation of our worlds, both real and imagined, and the implications of our desires to alter or escape them. They propose a more mindful interaction with our creations and caution against the unexamined embrace of alternate realities, whether they offer solace or horror.

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BP 4 – Darlyn Marine

Franz Kafka’s “In the Penal Colony” intricately weaves a narrative around themes of justice, authority, and the human condition through the lens of a peculiar execution device within a penal colony. The story begins with the exploration of the penal colony itself鈥攁 place designated for the punishment of prisoners, which is both isolated and operates under a strict regime. The apparatus at the center of the narrative executes prisoners by inscribing the law they broke onto their bodies, a process that culminates in death over a span of twelve hours. This gruesome method suggests a deeper commentary on the nature of punishment and the visibility of guilt.

The setting’s intense heat and the presence of elements such as a “teahouse” and “cane chair” subtly hint at the colonial backdrop of the narrative, suggesting a critique of colonial power dynamics and the imposition of justice systems upon colonized lands. The officer, who is both an operator and staunch advocate of the apparatus, provides an eerie insight into the experiences of the condemned, portraying the execution as a transformative experience that grants enlightenment, albeit through excruciating pain. This portrayal reflects a disturbing valorization of suffering and a quest for a higher understanding through the literal inscription of laws on the body.

The officer’s ultimate decision to throw himself onto the apparatus, leading to his brutal death, is a complex moment of irony and despair, highlighting the collapse of the system he so fervently believed in. This act can be seen as a critique of blind adherence to tradition and authority without questioning its moral and ethical implications.

Kafka’s narrative also prompts reflection on systems where due process is denied, drawing parallels to historical and contemporary examples of justice systems that fail to provide fair trials. The story probes the motivations behind such systems, suggesting a blend of desire for control, fear of dissent, and a deeply flawed understanding of justice and reformation.

“In the Penal Colony” serves as a profound symbol of the assertions colonizers make against those they have colonized, using the apparatus as a metaphor for the oppressive, often arbitrary systems imposed by colonizers. Kafka’s story, thus, transcends a mere critique of a fictional punishment device to challenge the reader to contemplate the real-world implications of justice, authority, and human dignity.

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BP5-Due Thursday, 2/28

I know I said that since we’re not having class on Tuesday that you would have an assignment due both Tuesday and Thursday, but since this blog post is about both stories, we’ll make it due just on Thursday. Remember to leave comments for BP 4 by Thursday as well.

Both “The Commuter” and “The Veldt” are about alternate realities. Compare and contrast how the alternate realities are both similar and different and tell us what you think we are supposed to take away from these two pieces. What do you think they are getting at? How do you think they want us to see the world(s) differently. Why?聽 Three substantial paragraphs should suffice.

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BP4 Albert Gonzalez

The penal colony is a story with a setting of convicts . There is a machine other wise known as a apparatus that punishes it’s victims violently.The vibe聽 of the story of it being so hot especially for the officer can describe the chaos that is going around as these executions are taking place. The apparatus symbolizes the suffering many聽 colonized people will face.

As for聽 the colonizers they have complete control of the situation no matter if they are ethically right or wrong and in our societal system unjust killings of people like in the novel happen all the time. As for the officer killing himself聽 in the story it seems he wanted to make amends for all the wrong doing he has done. All of these problems just lead to chaos in the end with no structured society in place as wr have srrn in history many times before.

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BP 4-Dreyfus & the Penal Colony

There are no actual details to tell us where the story is taking place, but there are some clues. From the understanding of the location, we can stipulate the meaning Kafka intended the story to convey. It seems like the story is taking place in a French penal colony; as can be deducted from the warm weather in the colony, which the Officer tells us is unlike his home country, and from the Officer and the Traveler speaking in French. France had penal colonies, a specific one in a warm climate is Devil’s Island in French Guinea. Considering all of this, and the time in which Kafka wrote this story, it can be inferred that he was commenting on the Dreyfus Affair.

Alfred Dreyfus was a Jewish artillery officer in the French military, in 1894 he was (wrongly) accused of spying for the Germans and subsequently sentenced to a French penal colony, called Devil’s Island. Kafka seems to be hinting at the wrongful imprisonment of Dreyfu. In Israel, we learn about the Dreyfus Affair, because of its inherent antisemitism. Kafka, a Jew himself, no doubt heard about, and was affected by the Dreyfus Affair.

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BP 4: Bryan Jimenez

“In the Penal Colony” looks into issues of justice, authority, and the human condition through the聽account of an execution machine聽in a penal colony. The story goes over various aspects of justice and punishment, which聽raises聽concerns about the morality and effectiveness of harsh punishment. The penal colony mirrors聽society, where those who have power聽force their ways on the weak, usually without following the law or showing any care for the rights of others.

One of the story’s main symbols for the harsh and inhumane aspects of the penal system is the apparatus. The prisoner’s punishment is set in stone in their bodies; a machine, which results in their execution. The method of execution is a reflection of the system’s cruelty and unjust character, where people suffer and die at the choice of those in positions of authority.

The ‘heat’ in the colony, especially for the officer, refers to the environment’s oppressive nature. It represents the harsh ethics of the penal system, in which both the guilty and those in charge are caught in an endless cycle of violence and agony. Referring to a “teahouse” and a “cane chair” shows the colonial context of the stories, suggesting that the colonizers are from a European background. Furthermore, it highlights the themes of oppression and power dynamics.

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BP-4 Khalil Issa

The story 鈥淚n the Penal Colony.鈥 By Kafka鈥檚 is simple about a traveler who was invited to an unnamed island by the Commander where a penal colony takes place, which is settlement where the await of being exiled happens, and it was this brutal ordeal the traveler was invited to witness. That condemned is a male prisoner who is only being sentenced to death for failing to respect his superior, he is being sentenced to death by a machine known as the apparatus developed by the officers (the man who guards the condemned and commutes the execution) former commander. The machine is build with woodwith a contains soft bed for the any condemned to lie on their stomach above them is designer that has multiple needles that functions by moving back and forth/up and down on the persons back. It鈥檚 also uses the needles to makes the very crime or wrong doing the person did on their back.

聽 聽 To the officer explains how reasonable doubt is more than enough to go through with such punishment, on this island there is no such this as innocent until proven guilty, believing there was a reason why there were accused and they would just lie when interrogated. The traveler agrees to watch despite his disapproval. It was said that the traveler was here to oppose this form of justice rather than condemn it, according to the officer. Believing someone who was not from this island could be the only one persuade the Commander to change the way they do things. He gets this mentality from how it was this kind of justice some rulers rules against, due to constant prejudice he removes the condemned from the apparatus and places himself upon it instead.

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BP 4- Paige Sanderson

In the story entitled “In the Penal Colony” written by Franz Kafka, the narrative transpires within a penal colony, a designated place wherein individuals who have transgressed the law are dispatched for retribution. The penal colony, as depicted in the story, is situated in a remote and sequestered locale, enveloped by exposed craggy formations alongside a diminutive sandy valley. This specific setting engenders a sentiment of confinement and detachment from the external realm, accentuating the power dynamics that are at play within the colony.

The apparatus featured in the narrative is an extraordinary execution contrivance devised by a former Commandant. It manifests as a convoluted and agonizing mechanism that inscribes the sentence of the condemned individual onto their physical being using needles. The officer, who harbors an ardent enthusiasm towards the machine, proceeds to delineate it in a meticulous manner, underscoring its efficacy and proficiency in executing punitive measures. The apparatus serves as a representation of the utmost authority and control exerted by the colonizers over the colonized. It embodies a system of retribution that is both brutal and dehumanizing, leaving no space for empathy or comprehension.

The intense heat experienced within the colony, particularly for the officer, implies the oppressive and suffocating nature of the habitat. The searing sun and the officer’s physical discomfort mirror the harsh conditions endured by both the colonizers and the colonized. It also symbolizes the apathy and callousness demonstrated by those in positions of power toward the anguish of others.

The mention of a “teahouse” and a “cane chair” insinuates that the colonizers might embody representatives of a colonial authority or an influential ruling class. These symbols evoke images of opulence and entitlement, juxtaposed against the harsh veracity of life within the penal colony. This implies that the colonizers remain detached from the misery and oppression they inflict upon the colonized, perceiving them solely as objects to be controlled and subjected to punishment.

The officer views the pain and suffering caused by the apparatus as a way to achieve enlightenment and redemption. This reflects the twisted logic of those in power justifying their oppressive actions for justice or enlightenment. The officer’s act of throwing himself on the apparatus can be seen as a desperate attempt to maintain power and the status quo, refusing to acknowledge flaws and injustices. Throughout history, systems without due process can be seen in authoritarian regimes, dictatorships, and oppressive colonial powers. Denying due process maintains control and suppresses dissent

The motivation behind denying due process is rooted in a desire for power and control. It allows those in power to manipulate the legal system, silencing opposition and maintaining authority.

“In the Penal Colony” explores themes of power, punishment, and indifference. Kafka raises questions about justice, abuse of power, and dehumanizing effects. The story criticizes authoritarianism and calls for empathy and understanding in the face of suffering.

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BP 4 – Gabriel Aguilar

The Penal Colony is a story about devotion, perseverance, and blind faith. It revolves around four characters who are gathered together to watch the process of a death sentence via a machine. This machine, which operates by scraping needle-like appendages across a victim’s body, marking them with the crime that they have committed, is extensively worshipped by the one who operates it, an officer who has been put in charge of it after the original maker had passed away. It’s unclear what kind of relationship the two had, however, we do know that the officer is obsessed with their former leader in an extremely unhealthy way, almost talking about them as if they were some sort of demigod.

One of the mysteries within the penal colony is the location of the colony itself. We get a few hints beyond what the Professor gave us in the prompt question. First, we know that while some of the denizens of this colony may be subject to religious fervor, or even just blind faith many see this as an old and wild ideology not worth respect. This means that the penal colony must take place somewhere that has a history of religion, or at least a heavy belief in hierarchy. This leads me to believe that it is based in either a Western European country or somewhere on the continent or surrounding islands of Asia. The second clue, highlighted by the professor is the teahouse, a sign of rich vegetation, or at least diverse herbal plants. This tea could have been in a couple of places, but I think the most likely based off of Kafka’s background would be within the UK. Finally, after a bit of research I learned that the “caned chair” was introduced in Europe in the 17th century, made by utilizing a plant that grew in Southeast Asia. I think that this cements the location of the Penal Colony as somewhere in the UK, most likely England. This would at least be the natural conclusion after learning this, except when you remember that Australia literally was a Penal Colony owned by the UK and very close to where cane was grown in Southeast Asia. This final piece of information, makes me believe that the Penal Colony is not within mainland UK, but is instead located in Australia.

Now that we’ve addressed the location of the Penal Colony as well as the machine at the heart of the story, we are able to further understand the story a bit easier, using our modern day lens to inform our perception of the story. We now know that the Penal Colony is in Australia, and that explains why the climate is so hot, especially for the officer who had been born in the UK. Which, honestly may inform some of his delusions, he is uncomfortable, and far away from home, grabbing onto the closest thing to him for some sense of normalcy during his time serving as a guard in the Penal Colony of Australia. This once was his commanding officer, and now that he is gone all he has is this machine that he has worked tirelessly on. When the threat of the machine’s dismantling is loomed over him, he decides to take his life. At first when reading this story I assumed that this was a complete breakdown of the man led by a pseudo religious belief system. However, as I come to understand the setting I think that this is actually his way of ending his life, which would be in some ways better than deserting his post within the military, as that would have consequences that were worse if not equal to what the machine could do to him. In this way the officer would have control over his life, a control that had been taken from him when he was sent to this new continent.

In conclusion, while the story is about devotion, perseverance, and blind faith, it presents itself in a very different way when you take into the account the setting of the story. The people here are military personnel who have been forced to an unfamiliar place and are expected to show devotion towards their government back home. The perseverance comes from the mental fortitude required to exist in a military post in a place you do not want to be, being thrust from your home is incredibly challenging, even if you do have the luxuries afforded to you as the higher class of a new civilization. Blind faith rears it’s head in many ways throughout the story, from the Officer’s faith in the machine, yes, but also from the soldier’s assuming a great reward upon their return from their post. This story is grim, and a reminder that while the actions of people can be heinous, there is almost always a reason for them, even if that reasoning does not in any way excuse the horrible actions that they take. As my father used to say, “You never know what someone else is going through.”

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BP4 by Isaiah.S

聽The Penal Colony itself was established by the previous commandant, being an organization of individuals that had an established set of rules and instructions that could not be overruled or manipulated by the next in command and so on, the colony also coherently deals with all penal crimes. A mention of a 鈥淭eahouse鈥 and the Cane chair pulled out for the explorer indicates this colony of people may indeed be European and the display of the officer speaking French means the colony itself is french. The purpose of the Apparatus machine established by the colony is described to be in three parts: the bed, designer and the harrow. The harrow is the middle piece of the machine that works to lift a selection of needles up and down in order to embroider a message into the flesh of the prisoner strapped to the automatic bed, this is to show their crimes to the public as well as work as an execution device.聽

The reasons the characters, especially the officer, are so hot is because they are in a sand ridden valley with little to no water besides a bucket for cleaning and the sun is beating down on their position, the officer is even worse off because he is required to wear a padded officer uniform. The officer as well despite the heat is able to keep up the conversation with the explorer about how the apparatus functions and describes the torture the prisoner endures thanks to the machine鈥檚 three parts working together needing only some repairs from time to time. He states 鈥渢he Harrow corresponds to the human form鈥 & 鈥…That is why we have to lose no time much as I dislike it,鈥 which means he聽

understands well on how the machine works but also understands the brutality of the machine in its operation to the human body. In deeper detail the officer describes the technical procedure as well as how the needles align itself with the skin of the prison before hardening, he also states the positions of the spikes at the head, torso and legs.

The apparatus and the punishment as stated is 鈥淯njust and inhumane鈥 but this is not something that hasn鈥檛 been seen before as many times throughout human history whether motivated by hatred or fear there have been many execution systems used with unfair and no trial given crimes for people that sometimes hadn鈥檛 even done entirely much wrong. It is hysteria that works as a driving force as well to execute someone without trial or self defense via a court or defense by a jury and this was typically done with witch trials or condemned men by royals under guillotine and other tortures.

Overtime it is clear that the officer seems distressed by the workings of the machine and all the prisoners he has had to condemn and when this random explorer arrives and gives his opinion despite his fear towards the officer and his soldier that the apparatus is inhuman and that he would not listen to his instruction on asking the 鈥淐onference & council鈥 to gather a better gag and parts, the explorer would rather leave soon as possible with utter disapproval of the system, now the Officer willingly lays down his clothes and commits himself to the machine he watched for so long because of his broken mental state on morality and order based on the previous commandants notes and rules. The apparatus itself is a symbol for radical solutions and the justification of punishment while sheltering one鈥檚 mind from morality and the thought of jury or discussion.


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BP 4–Due 2/22/24

This post is due Thursday, Feb 24th, along with 4 comments to your peers for BP 3.

For BP 4, two to three paragraphs using the following questions as a starting point for Kafka’s “In the Penal Colony.” Make sure your paragraphs work together to present an interpretation of the story. Don鈥檛 just answer the questions. Use them as starting points to write an interpretation of the deeper meanings of the story. Make sure the paragraphs adhere together to make a point you want to make about a productive way to interpret the story.

  • What was a penal colony?
  • What does the apparatus do?
  • What does it suggest to you that the place they are in is so hot, especially for the officer?
  • What does “teahouse” and “cane chair” suggest to you about who the colonizers could be.
  • How does the officer describe the feelings and experiences of those who are executed by the apparatus?
  • How might the writing of the apparatus serve as a symbol? In other words, if the apparatus writes the sentence upon the condemned person鈥檚 body, how does this serve as a symbol as to the kind of assertions colonizers would declare against those who have been colonized?
  • Why does the officer throw himself on the apparatus?
  • What are some examples of systems where condemned people did not have due process?
  • What would be the motivation of a person or system denying another of due process?

Remember, class on Feb 27th will be asynchronouse. I’ll be posting an assignment for that day shortly. Follow the syllabus for the readings!

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H.P Lovecraft Presentation (By Isaiah.S)

H.P Lovecraft presentation

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BP 3

The question I chose was 鈥渨hy do the citizens of Omelas have to be made aware of the existence of the child in the basement?鈥 The people in this utopian society must be made aware of this child in the basement because this child is the main reason as to why their society is able to hold its self up and operate on its own every single day.

When they first acknowledge this child some of the citizens in this society are either looking at them with disgust or sadness and after some time they realized that they鈥檙e solely dependent on this child so that they can continue their daily routines and/or continue keep being their everyday happy selves. It鈥檚 only then that they really take into consideration of what they鈥檙e doing and how their decisions can really affect this child along with the people around them but at the same time they see this as a 1:100 thing because they鈥檙e comfortable with this one child suffering rather than their whole society suffering.

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BP 3 – Alexis Xinol

The Question I chose is “How does the narrator invite the audience to imagine Omelas? Why does the narrator want the audience to co-create this utopia?

In “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas,” written by Ursula K. Le Guin, the narrator transports the listener to the fantastical world of Omelas with vivid descriptions that inspire amazement and astonishment. The listener is taken to an ideal society where pleasure is paramount thanks to the narrator’s careful description of Omelas as a city of unmatched beauty, plenty, and joy. The narrator invites the listener to completely immerse themselves in this ideal world as she weaves together pictures of vibrant sunsets, busy marketplaces, and streets full of laughter to create a beautifully detailed place that聽Omelas is. The narrator creates a sense of familiarity and connection by drawing such a realistic picture that it invites the listener to emotionally participate in the utopia they are co-creating in their heads.

The narrator’s deep desire to provoke critical thought about the nature of happiness, morality, and social standards is the reason behind her wish for the listener to be involved in the creation of Omelas. The narrator challenges the audience to face hard realities about the state of humanity and the ethical issues that arise while pursuing happiness for all by urging them to see Omelas as a paradise. The audience becomes involved in Omelas’ ethical conflict by this cooperative effort of world-building, which pushes them to consider the sacrifices and injustices that could form the foundation of the seemingly ideal society they have envisioned. In the end, the narrator challenges the audience to examine their own ideas and values by asking them to co-create Omelas.


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BP: 2

There are residents of the city of Omelas in Ursula K. LeGuin’s “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas.” In this city, the citizens are always happy and never go through hardships; however, there is a reason why the residents are content and never experience difficulties. When the residents are young, they are shown a child in the basement. After this, the children are told how this child has to stay miserable for them to be happy. I think the citizens have to be made aware of the existence of the child in the basement because it gives them time to come to terms and to deal with the situation. Telling the citizens also allows them to just twist it and make it sound better.

I think people walking away from Omelas represent them not accepting sacrificing another person’s happiness for their own. I think Le Guin believes staying in Omelas is the right choice. I think she believes this because she says that the happiness of thousands may not be worth the chance of happiness for one. If I had a choice, I would choose to leave the city of Omelas. I would choose to leave because it is not right to force someone to be miserable just for your personal wealth and prosperity. As a person, I just can鈥檛 live with someone being mistreated just for my own happiness.

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BP 3

The short story “The Ones Who Walk away from Omelas” by Ursula K LeGuinn describes the utopian city of Omelas. Everyone seems to be joyful and in harmony, even the horses whom are at the Festival of Summer. There is a procession and the narrator describes it as the happiest place to be in with women carrying babies while chatting with other women, people having fun dancing, and children running around. There is even a scene where a little boy is playing his wooden flute while people watch and smile. The narrator has painted the most peaceful place to attract the readers imagination. The reader would feel like a person from Omelas.

Now that the reader is engaged in the story, the narrator describes what it takes to be able to live in this utopian city and the citizens have an option of staying or leaving. The reader is now in the same dilemma as the citizens of Omelas. Should they stay and ignore the fact that a child is suffering or should they leave because the happiness of the city shouldn’t depend on this one child suffering? Some adults and even children have witnessed the child who lives in the basement or cellar and have decided to walk away and never come back to Omelas. I believe that the people walking away from Omelas represents the rejection of society鈥檚 way of life. Not everyone wants to fit in with society because sometimes some things are just not morally right. They prefer to leave everything behind than to ignore a child suffering for their own benefit.

I think LeGuinn believes that leaving Omelas is the right choice but she is afraid to leave because she does not know where people would stop at. She feels bad for the child suffering and justifies the other citizens staying by describing the disgust they feel when they find out that the city鈥檚 happiness depends on the child. They all know that happiness would not exist elsewhere like in Omelas. They are all trapped by society norms and aren’t aware of how unethical it is. If I were a citizen of Omelas, I would walk away after seeing that child! Its morally wrong to choose personal comfort instead of standing up to the injustice.聽 I wouldn’t be at peace anymore.

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BP #3

Why do the citizens of Omelas have to be made aware of the existence of the child in the basement?

It is important for the citizens of Omelas to be aware of the existence of the child being tortured in the basement because their overall structure and happiness depends on the suffering of that child. In order to maintain their utopian life, they must acknowledge the presence of the child鈥檚 sacrifice for the entire community. We can relate this back to the real world where we oftentimes make certain decisions so that we are able to maintain the happiness or satisfy the greatest amount of people.

What does walking away from Omelas represent? Which option do you think Le Guin believes is the right choice 鈥 staying in Omelas or walking away? Which option would you pick? Why?

Walking away from the Omelas represents the rejection of the community鈥檚 choice of normalcy and morals of having a child suffer in a small basement the size of a supply closet. Those who walked away from Omelas represents refusing to accept the harming of an innocent child all for the community to function the way it does. I believe that Le Guin may agree with the choice of leaving the Omelas and I think this because it seems that when she鈥檚 asking the questions before explaining about their lifestyle, she seems almost sarcastic in her writing. For example, after describing the citizens of Omelas, she asks 鈥淒o you believe? Do you accept the festival, the city, the joy? No? Then let me describe one more thing鈥︹ and then proceeds to speak about the terrible living conditions of the child.

I would also choose to walk away from the Omelas because I feel like even though it would be easy to live in a fantasy world where one is always happy, I wouldn鈥檛 be able to get out of my mind that there is a child, sitting bare in the corner of a basement. I also wouldn鈥檛 be able to get over the fact that his torture is what is maintaining our lives and happiness so when I am enjoying my day, I would feel some sort of guilt. In order to avoid all of this, I think walking away is the best option and sacrificing my personal comfort is the best way I find to do so.

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BP 3-Omelas

When reading Le Guin’s “Omelas” you grow disgust towards the town’s people, for allowing the horrific treatment of a young child. But if you look at yourself, the pants you wear, the shoes on your feet, the phone in your pocket are all products being made by young people in harsh conditions. But you accept that. You cannot comprehend locking a child in a basement and the joy that it brings to the town, yet you continue using products made by children in basements.

Omelas is a plotless short story. But it is an apt description of our society. But we have no mountains in the distance, to leave when it all feels like too much. Where can we go to escape our happy society? How can we walk away from Omelas?

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BP 2

The question I chose is 鈥淲hat lessons or warnings can be gleaned from the dystopian narrative, and how do they relate to contemporary society?鈥

I believe that 鈥淔rom Beyond鈥 by H.P Lovecraft is a dystopian text because the narrator finds out that everything he has lived, felt and seen is not what it seems. The narrators best friend, Crawford Tillinghast, is a scientist who finds a way to see things that the human eye cannot naturally see. This makes a reader wonder if such things are possible. We know that other animals can see colors that are not visible to the human eye or that they can hear other frequencies that a human cannot. When the narrator experiments this himself, he fears the situation. Tillinghast ends up dying in the end but due to apoplexy. Even this cause of death makes the narrator wonder if that is an actual cause of death or is it because of what Tillinghast has witnessed too. The narrator becomes uncomfortable remembering that other things exist such a weird jelly like fishes brushing against him that should just be regular wind. A lesson that can be extracted from this dystopian text is that there are consequences when interfering with the unknown.

In 鈥淭he Machine Stops鈥 by E.M Forster, society relies on a machine that does everything for them. It provides food, clothing, entertainment and communication. The setting takes place under ground and people don鈥檛 ever go to the surface of the earth. It is actually 鈥渘ot safe鈥. However, Kuno wants to explore because he believes there is more to life than depending on a machine that can do everything for you. This is a dystopian text that relates much to the contemporary world because the use of technology is rising. People want to make things easier by making advances in technology to help them. This text itself is a warning that you shouldn鈥檛 rely on technology because once it stops working people wont know what to do.

In the text 鈥淭here Will Come Soft Rains鈥 by Ray Bradburry the same concept is used. People rely on technology and they shouldn’t. In this text the setting takes place in the future where a house can do everything like make food and tell time. There is no one alive and it seems to be a nuclear accident because the house glows. In the future, technology might end up being a cause for no existence of human.

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BP 3 Albert Gonzalez

  • Why do the citizens of Omelas have to be made aware of the
    existence of the child in the basement?


The question I have chosen for the story聽 describes a very important concept that can be used in many instances within our society today. By people knowing that there is a child that may be suffering in order to build what they have .The politics by benefiting immensely from ones suffering comes to place.


Popular analogies like this story is businesses in real life that take advantage of some children making tech products for barely a livable wage . In hazardous conditions. People just need to be more aware and helpful to the minute amount of poor children who make their products like the聽 child in novel. Work that made the prosperous society to begin with. As one of the聽 quote聽 goes “I cannot describe it at all. It is possible that it does not exist” describes on how nothing聽 can be s聽 perfect utopia .


In conclusion History gets lost for聽 the unsung hero鈥檚 who made this country what it is today. They get pushed aside for the greater good . Overall the more we be kind to everyone especially to all the workers that make our country great as a whole would聽 be the moment we really become 聽more of a perfect utopia.

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BP_3 C.Caruso

The citizens of Omelas have to be made aware of the existence of the child in the basement in order to understand the duality of their perfect world. On the one hand, they lead beautiful lives in a utopian wonderland with seemingly not a worry of misfortune or pain. Omelas is described as a fantastical place with beauty in every corner; people are mature, peaceful, content. Children are smart, joyful, loved and appreciated. All but one.
In order for society to thrive in such a way, one single child is left in a tool closet to essentially degrade in their own filth. The child is deprived of affection or contact, fed meager amounts of grease and cornmeal, covered in sores all along the backside, becoming less and less communicative. It is pure, festering, humanoid waste, and the whole of Omelas is fine with this.

All of society, old and young alike are fully aware of the child in the basement, as they are almost required to look upon it and leave in disgust. Sooner or later, they come to terms with the fact that their society will thrive as long as one suffers alone. This invites us to put ourselves in their shoes and ask, where is the moral line to cut off how much suffering for another is tolerable for your preferred level of comfort? Does life revolve around the individual or success of the group as a whole?

Though this seems to be the way of the land in Omelas, not everyone sips the proverbial kool-aid and carries out the rest of their happy days. There are some, no discrimination to age or sex once more, that never return to life before the closet thing. For these individuals are said to just take off walking through the night, through the alleys, through the mountains, and into the unknown. They walk and walk, all the way with not a soul on their side, until they are gone. I think this “walking away” on one’s own is just their form of resisting what they are told. To say, “absolutely not.” , and if that is the way that life is so fruitful for them, than anything life has in store for them outside of those stipulations is just life. Maybe they feel there is something more to be found outside of that train of thought. LeGuin even says in the text, “I cannot describe it at all. It is possible that it does not exist (wherever the place is they are going to). But they seem to know where they are going. . “.



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Blog Post 3

We are Invited to imagine Omelas by the narrator鈥檚 decision to leave us guessing or under assumption after his/her description of the festivals that is celebrated every summer within Omelas. It鈥檚 described in such colorful kind of way. 鈥淲ith a clamor of bells that set the swallows soaring, the Festival of Summer came to the city Omelas, bright-towered by the sea. The ringing of the boats in harbor sparkled with flags. In the streets between houses with red roofs and painted walls, between old moss-grown gardens and under avenues of trees, past great parks and public buildings, processions moved.鈥. Judging from the words used here, I initially look at Omelas as something special. The narrator reasons for its audience to help co-create Omelas was to make us have a more personal stake regarding its outcome.

聽聽 聽 The citizen must be aware of the Child imprisonment and suffering in order for them to understand that they have what they because of the child it also teaches them to be more thankful and appreciative towards each other and life itself.

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