What is the major feature of the setting in "All Summer in a Day"? Which details let you know this?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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The major feature of the setting is the constant rain that the colonists of Venus are subject to. In this short story, Bradbury creates a planet which has been colonised by humans, but because of the incessant rain, they are forced to live out their lives in tunnels. It only stops raining on the planet Venus once every seven years, and then rains again for another seven years, and so on. The importance of this fact is shown through one of the early paragraphs in the story:

It had been raining for seven years; thousands upon thousands of days compounded and filled from one end to the other with rain, with the drum and gush of water, with the sweet crystal fall of showers and the concussion of storms so heavy they were tidal waves come over the islands.

Note how the langauge of this sentence emphasises the rain and the sheer amount of time that it does rain on this planet. The use of hyperbole in "thousands upon thousands of days" and the onomatopoeia in "drum and gush" and the imagery of rainstorms so heavy that they were "tidal waves," a metaphor conveying the force of the water, all serve to emphasise just how important the rain is to the reader's understanding of the setting. It also conveys the tremendous relief and wonder that the inhabitants feel when it finally stops raining, albeit briefly.


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