Published: 2021-09-27 19:30:04
essay essay

Category: Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury, Existentialism

Type of paper: Essay

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Kaleidoscope by Ray Bradbury I am fortunate enough to take a wonderful course that solely focused on Bradbury and his work, taught by his very own biographer. IVe never read as many stories written by a single author before. Even so, I can safely say that he is one of the best writers IVe ever read. "Kaleidoscope," which appears in Bradburys remarkable short story collection, The Illustrated Man, is a story that literally sends you up into outer space. The name itself gives us an idea what this story is about. The bright colors and hanging views, it is an interesting story but not one that is so funny to read.
From the very beginning we know that these men are dead and everything that we are able to do is Just to watch them are dyeing without much hope. This is a kind of deeply philosophical and introspective tale, which is the hallmark of Bradburys writing. Through a simple accident in space, a rocket full of astronauts explodes and its crew is strewn across the emptiness, falling until their oxygen runs out, or until they collide with meteors or the Moon, or the Earth. Kaleidoscope" really is a plot-wise story. It begins after the ship has already exploded.
Most of the story takes place from a vantage point close to Hollis. He is the main character and the captain of the ship, a man who has hidden his emotions for most of his life. He went into space because it helped him to avoid women and he clearly envies those men who have better luck with women. He tries to convince himself that there is no difference between him and them but he knows that it isn't true, they have memories, and he has only dreams. So we can see what he sees as the Earth's gravity is pulling him in. And soon Hollis is alone, alone with his thought.

As these men hurtle toward their fate, feeling helpless in preventing their own deaths, they understandably bicker and find fault with each other. One of the men is the most calm about his death having lived a good life, however there's a particularly compelling argument between Hollis and Lespere, an apparent womanizer who has actually no regrets, as I have already said, and who lets Hollis know about it. And Hollis retorts that it doesn't matter, that heyre all meeting the same fate now, and Lespere's "life experiences" doesn't make his life any better than that of Hollis.
But, as Lespere explains, "l got my thoughts, I remember. " On the one hand, a bleakly existentialist view is advanced by Hollis: in the end we all die alone and death renders everything before it pointless. While this may be philosophically sound, though that's also debatable, it doesnt have the emotional resonance of Lespere's assertion that one must live as fully as possible, in order to better accept death when the time comes. The fact that Lespere has led a orally reprehensible life, indulging in bigamy and gambling, for starters is Bradbury's way of cautioning about the extremes of such an attitude.
In the end, there is a sense of redemption in Hollis becoming a star upon which a little boy makes a wish. What is really important is that the whole story is telling of the human condition. We as humans, by our nature, become incredibly reflective when we know the end is near. We might even become bitter and spiteful and lash out. Moreover, the question of how people face death is one that is well worth exploring, but in any ypes of tragedy on the Earth, that doesn't kill people immediately means that they Bradbury gets around exactly that problem by setting "Kaleidoscope".
The main theme, I believe, is that life is unpredictable and you should enjoy or relish every second of it because you never know when it will be taken from you or someone close to you. The many insignificant squabbles that we constantly encounter in life do not amount to a hill of beans. What is important is love! The beauty of this world is many faceted like a kaleidoscopes image but also very fragile and brief Just like each eparate image in the scope.
Some people realize this and live accordingly while others do not until the very end when it is too late. And yet, even with those memories, we're still the same in those final moments before the end The story seems to take the side of memories, of having done something with one's life while given the opportunity. Ultimately, "Kaleidoscope" is the kind of story which provides the opportunity for reflection. It's the epitome of science-fiction, using hypothetical circumstances to take a deeper look at the human condition.

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