Childhood's End | Study Guide

Arthur C. Clarke

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Childhood's End | Chapter 15 | Summary

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Summary

While Jan is on the ship moving toward the Overlords' planet, George and Jean make plans to move to New Athens, a two-island colony established to try to foster creativity and the arts. It is not seen as a rebellion against the Overlords, but rather as a chance to find a way forward for humanity. When they arrive, they find that luxuries like motor vehicles and restaurants are not available in New Athens, but George settles in quickly and begins working on theater productions.

Analysis

New Athens, named for the Greek capital often associated with learning and democracy, becomes the center of creative activity on Earth, a place where humankind tries to reclaim some of its potential. Although in this chapter it is made clear that it did begin as a small revolt against the Overlords, it has continued to flourish with no revolutionary agenda. A few luxuries of Central, or the rest of the world, are missing, which is most likely meant to create a sense of difficulty or conflict that can drive creativity in the absence of true concerns.

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