What are the themes in The War of the Worlds?
Nineteenth-century science fiction often focuses upon man's ability to achieve things beyond the scope of what had been thought possible in the pre-technological, pre-industrial age. Jules Verne, for instance, presents fantastic scenarios that extend both outward, to space (in From the Earth to the Moon), inward (Journey to the Center of the Earth), and everywhere, so to speak, in Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea and Around the World in Eighty Days. H. G. Wells's fiction, while continuing these predictions of achievement, generally has much darker themes than that of Verne. In The War of the Worlds, the principal idea is that of humanity's vulnerability, his weakness in the face of a "futuristic" technology, but one in the hands of ruthless and (at first) seemingly all-powerful aliens.
The message in Wells is not only...
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