In the story of "A Sound of Thunder," what things have changed since the men travelled into the past?

In "A Sound of Thunder," when Eckels returns to the present, Bradbury describes him experiencing a vague and disconcerting sensation by which the entire world seems to have been fundamentally changed in ways he cannot grasp. As the story continues, Bradbury shows how spelling conventions in the English language have been dramatically alterred. Additionally, politics have shifted as well. Whereas originally, Keith had defeated the authoritarian Deutscher, now the results are the other way around.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

I think there's an argument that we don't entirely know the full nature of the changes Eckels has created in the timeline. Afterall, what we see at the end of the story is, more than anything else, the effects that have resulted from a much larger teleology, but we don't precisely see the process by which those changes have been shaped, or how this larger picture fits together. It's, in fact, a very limited window into an alternate present, but even from that limited vantage point, it is clear that Eckels has caused profound damage to the timeline.

When he first returns to the present, Bradbury writes:

Eckels stood smelling the air, and there was a thing to the air, a chemical taint so subtle, so slight, that only a faint cry of his subliminal senses warned him it was there. The colors, white, gray, blue, orange, in the wall, in the furniture, in the sky beyond the window, were... were... And there was a feel . His flesh twitched. His hands twitched. He stood drinking the oddness with the...

(The entire section contains 5 answers and 1155 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Last Updated by eNotes Editorial on