Regarding the short story "There Will Come Soft Rains," do you take the story to be simple fantasy, or do you take it to be a comment on our life? Explain.

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This story has fantasy elements, such as the fact that it is set in a future time after a nuclear war and that it envisions a house that is more technologically advanced than houses we have now, but it is primarily a comment on our lives today.

In the story, a house goes on through the routines it has been programmed for, pointlessly trying to take care of the needs of a family that no longer exists. We assume that the family has been vaporized in a nuclear blast, because only their blackened outlines remain, baked into the side of their home, showing them playing outdoors when the bomb struck.

The point of the story is that the society in which this family lived became too reliant on technology and lost touch with nature—and that being divorced from the natural world also led to the disaster of a nuclear war. Nature, Bradbury's story argues, doesn't care what humankind does to itself: it can go on without us. The story quotes from Sara Teasdale's poem "There Will Come Soft Rains" to make its point:

Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree,

If mankind perished utterly;

And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn

Would scarcely know that we were gone...

Therefore, if we are going to survive, we need to stay in touch with nature: we need it more than it needs us.

Bradbury was commenting on his own mid-twentieth-century world, saying that people had lost touch with nature; but the same idea is still highly relevant today. Many people blame current climate changes on human over-reliance on cars, airplanes, air-conditioning, and other technologies that seal us in climate-controlled environments and speed us from place to place while spewing too much CO2 into the environment, dangerously heating the planet. However, we are so cut off from the natural environment that we do not even realize the extent to which we are destroying it, many argue. Bradbury's story is a cautionary tale, warning us to get more in touch with nature and rely less on technology or risk being destroyed. This message is as relevant now as it was sixty years ago.

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