A Sound of Thunder

A Sound of Thunder - by Ray Bradbury by A Sound of Thunder...

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Unformatted text preview: by Ray Bradbury by A Sound of Thunder Meet the Writer Most noted for his short stories, Ray Bradbury has also written novels, children’s books, plays, screenplays, television scripts, and poetry. His vivid imagination, lively style, and social commentary have set him apart in the world of fantasy and science­fiction writers. Bradbury was born in Waukegan, Illinois, in 1920. His family moved to Los Angeles in 1934. He became interested in books and writing early in life. Ray Bradbury Ray Bradbury Ray Ray Bradbury is one of those rare individuals whose writing has changed the way people think. His more than five hundred published works -- short stories, novels, plays, screenplays, television scripts, and verse -- exemplify the American imagination at its most creative. Once read, his words are never forgotten. His best-known and most beloved books, The Martian Chronicles, The Illustrated Man, Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes, are masterworks that readers carry with them over a lifetime. His timeless, constant appeal to audiences young and old has proven him to be one of the truly classic authors of the 20th Century -- and the 21st. In recognition of his stature in the world of literature and the impact he has had on so many for so many years, Bradbury was awarded the National Book Foundation's 2000 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, and the National Medal of Arts in 2004. Ray Bradbury Ray Ray Bradbury calls himself a teller of tales and a magic realist. He also claims to remember everything – every book he’s ever read, every movie he’s seen, all the events of his life back to and including his birth, in Waukegan, Illinois, on August 22, 1920. All those memories and a big imagination are the materials for the fiction and poetry he’s been publishing for more than fifty years. Ray Bradbury Ray Bradbury’s work is full of childhood imaginings, Bradbury’s fantasies, and nightmares – portraits of Venus and Mars, time travel, ageless children, neverand ending rains – but Bradbury the grown-up is a ending concerned citizen. concerned His fantasy stories are often warnings against His blind faith in science, but they’re optimistic. By giving strange twists to everyday objects and events, Bradbury challenges his readers to look at them as if for the first time. As a writer he lets readers see science through the excited years of children, but he also informs, suggesting ways to use technology more responsibly. use Genre Genre A genre is a category or type of literature, such as fiction or poetry. Each genre can be subdivided into more specific categories that can be identified by subject matter, content, or style. Identifying the genre of a selection helps a reader to establish expectations for the work. Readers can understand the genre of a literary work by analyzing its characteristics. As you read “A Sound of Thunder,” notice the clues that reveal the common elements of science fiction. Elements of Science Fiction Elements Damon Knight, author, editor, critic, and founder of the Damon Science Fiction Writers of America, once attempted to quantify the elements of science fiction. quantify He came up with the following list derived from a He number of previously published formal definitions of science fiction: science Damon Knight science science technology and invention technology the future and the remote past, including all time travel the stories extrapolation (speculation based on signs or omens) scientific method scientific other places--planets, dimensions, etc., including visitors other from the above catastrophes, natural or manmade catastrophes, Knight concluded that a story with at least three of the above elements is generally perceived to be science fiction; stories with two elements were borderline; stories with one or no elements were not science fiction. stories Science Fiction Science Although the term s cie nce fiction was not used until about 1930, science fiction tales have been told since before the invention of writing. One of the earliest science fiction writers was Lucian of Samosata who, around 100 BC, wrote a fantasy about a journey to the moon. Modern science fiction began to take shape in the nineteenth century. Science Fiction Science Science fiction is defined loosely as fiction that deals with the impact of science and technology on the world. Sometimes the technology is real, sometimes it is entirely imagined, and sometimes it has been imagined by an author and then brought to reality by scientists. Science fiction A Sound of Thunder Sound by Ray Bradbury “Who controls the past controls the future.” —George Orwell A Sound of Thunder Sound In the following short story, Ray Bradbury implies that seemingly insignificant actions can change the future for an entire generation. Before you read the story, think about the following questions: • • How might your actions during your lifetime affect someone living one hundred years in the future? Do you believe that you have a responsibility to future generations? A Sound of Thunder Sound Introducing the Story It’s the year 2055. Eckels, a wealthy hunter, wants to travel back in time to shoot a ferocious dinosaur. But he gets in over his head when he books passage with Time Safari, Inc. • This story explores the possibility that even tiny changes to the environment of the past can drastically alter the future. Tyrannosaurus Rex Tyrannosaurus The Tyrannosaurus rex lived during the late Cretaceous Period, between 97 The and 66 million years ago. Scientists estimate its length at about 40 to 50 feet, its height at about 15 to 20 feet, and its weight at about 5 to 7 tons. feet, The dinosaur’s open mouth revealed frighteningly sharp six-inch-long teeth The with serrated edges. A Sound of Thunder Introducing the Story T­rex lived during the late Cretaceous Period. What other life forms were around then? insects similar to today’s the first flowering plants marine invertebrates A Sound of Thunder Literary Focus: Style Ray Bradbury tells this science­fiction story in a lush style. • He uses vivid images and imaginative figurative language to create an exotic setting. • The setting and the figurative language shape a tense and suspenseful mood, or atmosphere. A Sound of Thunder Literary Focus: Style As you read “A Sound of Thunder,” notice the elements of Bradbury’s style. • Diction and sentence patterns: How do they create a distinctive writing style? • Images: Which of your senses do they appeal to? What feelings do they evoke for you? • Figurative language: How does it help create the setting? the mood? A Sound of Thunder Reading Skills: Cause and Effect The plot of “A Sound of Thunder” is based on a theoretical cause­and­effect chain that might look something like this: Time­traveling human steps on butterfly in past. Butterfly population declines. Humans evolve in different environment. Modern civilization is altered. Entire ecosystem is upset. A Sound of Thunder Sound Summary This science fiction story begins in the year This 2055, the day after an election in which Keith, a democrat, wins out over Deutscher, a fascist. Time travel is possible and Eckels, a wealthy hunter, goes, goes on a prehistoric safari to shoot a dinosaur. As Eckels’s party travels back in time, Travis, the leader, warns the hunters not to stray from a prelaid anti-gravity Path, theorizing that the minutest damage to the environment could have serious reverberations for the future. serious A Sound of Thunder Sound Summary Even the tyrannosaur they are going to shoot is chosen Even because it would have died minutes later anyway. When the time comes to make the kill, Eckels panics and runs away, stumbling off the Path. Travis is furious. After the party returns to 2055, Eckels senses that things are subtly different. He then discovers a dead butterfly on the sole of his shoe. After on After finding out that now Deutscher has triumphed over After Keith, Eckels realizes the magnitude of his actions – he has changed the course of his country’s history. The story’s climax comes when Travis shoots Eckels. story’s This powerpoint was kindly donated to www.worldofteaching.com http://www.worldofteaching.com is home to over a thousand powerpoints submitted by teachers. This is a completely free site and requires no registration. Please visit and I hope it will help in your teaching. ...
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