[FPSPACE] Exploration Machismo (was: The Martyrdom of Man by
zirconic1 at earthlink.net
Wed Aug 31 22:05:45 EDT 2005
From: Nick Watkins <nww62 at yahoo.co.uk>
Sent: Sep 1, 2005 12:15 AM
>It's interesting to see how similar the tone is to the
wonderful ending of the film of Wells' "Things to
A generally lousy film with some great imagery at the end.
But why was everybody wearing togas in the future? Did you ever notice that after this movie (did it start with this movie?) that whenever somebody wanted to symbolize "The Future" they always had people wearing togas?
>Passworthy: "I feel what we've done is monstrous!"
Cabal: "What we've done is magnificent."
Passworthy: "If they don't come back--my son and your
daughter--what of that, Cabal?"
Cabal: "Then, presently, others will go."
Passworthy: "Oh, god, is there ever to be any age of
happiness? Is there never to be any rest?"
Cabal: "Rest enough for the individual man--too much,
and too soon--and we call it death. But for Man, no
rest and no ending. He must go on, conquest beyond
conquest. First this little planet with its winds and
ways, and then all the laws of mind and matter that
restrain him. Then the planets about him and at last
Who talks like that?
>out across immensity to the stars. And when he has
conquered all the deeps of space and all the mysteries
of time, still he will be beginning."
Passworthy: "But...we're such little creatures. Poor
humanity's so fragile, so weak. Little...little
Really, who talks like that?!
> as the savage cannot understand electricity,
> magnetism, steam. Disease
> will be extirpated; the causes of decay will be
> removed; immortality
> will be invented. And then, the earth being small,
> mankind will migrate
The similarity is not coincidence. This is classic triumph of the will space exploration rhetoric. There has _always_ been an aspect of conquering the new frontier aspect to spaceflight. I argued awhile ago in a Space Review piece that this triumphalist macho language really started to fade in the United States by the 1970s. But it was heavily used before then. One can argue that the sentiment is still represented in the alt-space movement. There are still people who want to conquer new frontiers because they don't like the planet we live on.
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