The Cold Equations

by Tom Godwin

Start Free Trial

What is an example of jargon from the story "The Cold Equations" by Tom Godwin?

Expert Answers

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

As a literary device, jargon consists of words that are broadly used within an occupation, subject, or business. For example, we have legal jargon, which may consist of stock phrases, definitions, or specific words that are used in courts or law offices. In the story, The Cold Equations, we can deduce that since the genre is science fiction, we will likely come across specific phrases or words indicative of such a designation.

An example of science fiction jargon in the story is the word "hyperspace." This is a reference to a region in an alternative universe (coexisting with our own), where it is possible to travel faster than the speed of light. In Star Trek, we would call hyperspace travel "warp speed travel." Of course, neither hyperspace travel nor warp speed travel exists in our current universe. However, the concept is extremely popular in science fiction stories.

Another example of jargon in the story is "hyperspace drive." This is a reference to technology that allows spaceships and other types of space vehicles to travel faster than the speed of light. So, in a science fiction world like the one on Star Trek, the battleships and space cruisers have been equipped with hyperspace drive technology, which allows them to travel at warp speed. In The Cold Equations, hyperspace technology has allowed Earth to install new colonies across space frontiers:

Galactic expansion had followed the development of the hyperspace drive, and as men scattered wide across the frontier, there had come the problem of contact with the isolated first colonies and exploration parties. The huge hyperspace cruisers were the product of the combined genius and effort of Earth and were long and expensive in the building.


See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team