What are some universal truths associated with this story?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I would say that one particular universal truth is that human innovation is capable of both great boon and great destruction.  On one hand, the house is a marvel of human capacity.  The self cleaning mechanism, as well as the technological capacity of the house represents what humans can do.  At the same time, the house is situated in a setting where human capacity for destruction is evident. The nuclear fallout that surrounds the house as well as the lack of life around it is one where human capability for destruction is highly evident.  There is a dialectic in the short story of how human creativity can represent the source of greatness, but also for a sense of destruction.  In the end, one of the universal truths of the work is that human innovation has both a side of redemption, but also of despair.  It is this reality, something inescapable regarding human nature, that ends up defining what it means to be human and to live in a human society.  This becomes one of the universal truths about the definition of humanity that comes out of the short story.