abstract illustration of concentric circles punctuated by lines emanating from a clock in the middle of the drawing

The Time Machine

by H. G. Wells

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1. Consider the physical aspects of Wells's world of A.D. 802,701. Describe the land surface, waterways, climate, plants and animals, natural resources, and inhabitants as objectively as possible, as if you were writing an atlas entry about England at this time.

2. Read carefully the section describing the traveller's return. Describe the traveller's appearance and explain what caused his injuries, dirt, and disordered clothing.

3. The traveller frequently philosophizes during his narrative, sometimes correcting earlier interpretations. Explain how he first accounts for the humanity he sees in the Eloi. How does he modify this view after he has become aware of the nature of the Morlocks?

4. The Eloi are not presented as truly human, but they would not be able to evoke pity in the reader if they did not have some touches of humanity. Explain the characteristics that make them different from humans of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, comparing these alien characteristics with their more human traits.

5. One of the essential elements of science fiction is that it uses scientific or scientifically plausible principles in order to create a sense of verisimilitude. Explain how Wells uses science or pseudo-science to make the story of the time traveller seem credible.

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