21 February 2012

Sadness, Emptiness

And the thought of her lying on the bed with the two technicians standing straight over her, not bent with concern, but only standing straight, arms folded.  and he remembered thinking then that if she died, he was certain he wouldn't cry.  For it would be the dying of an unknown, a street face, a newspaper image, and it was suddenly so very wrong that he had begun to cry, not at death but at the thought of not crying at death, a silly empty man near a silly empty woman...
Pg 44, Fahrenheit 451 

This made me think of the people who have died before I ever knew them throughout my life.  I stopped reading and just sat for a moment.  That's a pretty powerful image.


  1. Do you feel that there is a certain coldness to Sci Fi and how do you get past it? Or are you partial to it? This quote is an exact example. Do you find that there is any warmness to the stories? I can't decide if I decided to ask you this if I truly want to know the depth of your answer or if it is because I am actually cold and chewing ice.

    1. I think this quote probably should be read in the context of the book. Fundamentally, F451 is an optimistic book and this quote comes from that part of the book that is really setting the stage for Montag's self-destruction and eventual redemption. Here is a quote from later in the book that might take the chill off:

      "Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there." (156)

      I don't share the same view of science fiction. Perhaps in my reviews thus far, I've focused on the more sad, depressing and "cold" aspects of the novels, but I don't think that is representative of the genre. Over the years, works science fiction have encompassed so many different themes that the term "science fiction" is only slightly more descriptive than when you see a film labeled "drama".

      I hope my reviews aren't scaring you away from the genre. I'll try to add a little more warmth ;)

  2. Thank you for the clarification. I do realize that the word "Sci Fi" encompasses an enormous amount of different types of works, yet they do seem to all focus on the attempted destruction of man somehow whether it is physical or his soul. Although, I do suppose that I am ignoring the eventual redemption found at the end of most stories. I like to avoid all unpleasantness these days (even when it is on the way to extreme happiness) and that makes me a coward. :) Please do not alter your "darkness" factor in any way for then it would not be genuine. I will read on!

  3. Do not worry about the content of the ominous "comment removed by author" above my response. I simply found a typo and couldn't stand it so I had to fix it and re-post. When I see that, I always believe that someone has said something very nasty and then thought twice about his/her comment. LOL!


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