What is Bradbury's main purpose in "There Will Come Soft Rains"?

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In Ray Bradbury's dystopian short story "There Will Come Soft Rains ," a single house is left standing in the year 2026, after an atomic blast kills the inhabitants of the house and the rest of the city of Allendale, California. The short story presents a clear warning...

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In Ray Bradbury's dystopian short story "There Will Come Soft Rains," a single house is left standing in the year 2026, after an atomic blast kills the inhabitants of the house and the rest of the city of Allendale, California. The short story presents a clear warning against the current disastroous trajectory of society. As civilization advances, technology advances within it, creating systems such as "smart homes" that actually exist today (something that only thirty years ago would have been considered a work of science fiction). The home that is described in the short story is only a more advanced manifestation of the smart homes that exist today. The bombs that destroy Allendale are unspecified, but they certainly mirror the bombs that exist today that have the capability of wiping out entire cities. Devoid of human life, the smart appliances of the home continue to go about their daily tasks, unaware of the death and carnage around them, until the house catches fire and burns to the ground.

Bradbury is warning us against a future that could come at any moment, given the level of technology and weaponry that exists in the nations of the Global North. While those who can afford "smart homes" experience the luxury of technology, those who live in places like Palestine and Syria experience the complete and utter destruction and horror of advanced technology as cutting-edge weaponry and the surveillance systems of militaries destroy millions of lives. On the southern border of the United States, cutting-edge surveillance technology is being used to track down migrants fleeing from war-torn and economically impoverished countries. These migrants are then held in what amounts to concentration camps along the US border, guarded by the manpower and technology of the border patrol, military, and police. Certainly, aside from the atomic destruction of an entire city in the United States, this dystopian reality that Bradbury has written about in "There Will Come Soft Rains" is already here.

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One could argue that Bradbury's main purpose for writing "There Will Come Soft Rains" is to warn readers about the dual nature of technology and illustrate how technology cannot save humanity. In an ever-increasing technical society, citizens have become dependent on technology to make their lives easier.

Despite the many advantages of technology, it can also be used for destructive purposes, like developing nuclear weapons capable of annihilating nations. Throughout the short story, the house's amazing technical feats are juxtaposed against the destructive nature of nuclear bombs to emphasize the dual nature of technology.

Bradbury also warns humans that despite our technical capabilities, we are in charge of how we choose to utilize our technology. While humans can develop technology to make our everyday lives easier, we can also create weapons that are capable of destroying everything. Essentially, technology will not be able to save humanity by preventing humans from making terrible, disastrous decisions, like resorting to nuclear warfare to end conflicts between nations.

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Perhaps Bradbury's main purpose in "There Will Come Soft Rains" is to observe that no matter how technologically accomplished we become, humanity's overriding inclination is to wage war. And after the development of the devastating weapons unleashed on Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II, Bradbury observes that the stakes in waging war have grown frighteningly higher than previous wars.

Bradbury also suggests that we, as designers of the technology that powers the story's empty house, may be reflecting our own diminishing humanity. The robots who first let in the whining dog and then clean up its carcass are "angry mice, angry at having to pick up mud, angry at inconvenience." Of all the human emotions to assign to robots, Bradbury chose anger, not compassion.

Another "convenience" of the house reflects man's diminishing humanity. A robot voice reads aloud a poem at day's end; literature is, ironically, considered a discipline of the humanities, yet it is left up to a machine to coldly recite what perhaps Bradbury felt should remain the domain of the human voice.

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Bradbury’s main purpose in writing the short story “There Will Come Soft Rains” is to warn his readers about their overuse of technology. The houses in this society that do everything for their families, from fixing breakfast to making sure they get to appointments on time, is representative of how we have allowed technology to run our lives. We’ve become so reliant on technology that it becomes impossible to be self-sufficient. However, Bradbury’s message runs much deeper. The people in this society have been destroyed by a nuclear war. No one remains to take advantage of the technology they invented. The irony lies in the fact that the very technology that humans created also destroyed them. Bradbury’s story is a cautionary tale about giving technology too much power in one’s life.

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In my opinion, the main purpose of this story is to warn people of the dangers of relying too much on technology.

In the society in the story, people have come to rely on technology for everything.  The house that we hear about takes care of its inhabitants in every possible way.  They really do not have to do anything anymore.  At the same time, the people have also come to have too much military technology.  This technology is what ends up destroying the whole city (and maybe the whole society).

So Bradbury is saying that people have devised too much technology and have come to rely on it too much.

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