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Crimes of Mankind Against Mother-nature in The 'A Sound of Thunder'

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Ray Bradbury’s “A Sound of Thunder” is a science fiction story published in 1952. It is a time travel narrative set up in 2055 where a time travel outfitting agency named Time Safari Inc offers people to travel back to the age of dinosaurs and kill Tyrannosaurus rex. What is the theme of “A Sound of Thunder”? The story outlines the consequences of human actions and repercussions of it, which are felt through time. Bradbury raises concerns about technology and warns about how even small changes (in this case the killing of the butterfly) can lead to drastic changes in the future which would affect the mankind and infact nature, which has taken the burden of human’s disturbances that has continuously being affecting it, worsening its state at his level best without taking care of aftermath.

The safari leaders Mr. Travis and Lesperance along with the other members accompanying them have taken the required precautionary measures while on their way to kill Tyrannosaurus rex and they also have the understanding of the disastrous impact of their safaris and yet the mishap occurs to which they respond haphazardly without having to care about the results. This is a representation of human’s actions against the environment which they have been continuously committing instead of knowing the after effects of their undertaking. They are also aware about the harm that their deeds are causing to nature and still don’t reiterate from committing them. We humans continue to deteriorate nature and all other natural resources without having to take care of the outcome.

Travis emphasizes the group on the need to stay on path, to which he explains by the possible impacts it might create on the food chain and disturbing ecological dependencies. He’s aware about the destruction the killing of even a small animal or bird might create and disturb infinite billions of life forms. This is surely accentuate the importance of all lives on the planet and how they are connected and how humans must be a good manciple to preserve this fragile balance.

Eckles throwing huge amount of money to travel the past and the company offering such ride aginst nature and charging the penalty amount for any wrongdoing is a mere portrayal of human’s crimes in the view of development and civilization at the cost of nature. The spending of money could be symbolic of the ability of first world and third world countries to spend money on the so called ‘development’ that they make. Also, the company is concerned only about its reputation and profit that would be lost because the butterfly has been killed by Eckles and due to which the President of the States changed. They don’t care of the chaos that it has caused neither they wish to repair it alike us humans who are moving towards the blind race of civilization, competing with different countries to the levels of development and in the way causing a huge amount of loss to environment which is irreversible.

When Eckles becomes aware of what he has done and suggests to go back to mend the disaster, he has been killed. It could be indicative of the fact that it has been very late now and the when the realisation would hit us there would be nothing in our hands to reverse back our actions and making things as they were before.

Bradbury’s short story is not only suggestive of respecting and preserving nature but also is a representation of how human’s acts can cause environmental destruction which would be beyond restoration. The story at many points is a depiction of crimes against our environment and how humans are advancing blindly towards it. It teaches us the lesson and need for conservation in which we are failing despite the efforts some of us are trying to put because we’ve a partial understanding of ecology and the ways of preserving aren’t effective enough.

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Crimes of Mankind Against Mother-Nature in the ‘A Sound of Thunder’. (2023, February 11). GradesFixer. Retrieved March 21, 2023, from
“Crimes of Mankind Against Mother-Nature in the ‘A Sound of Thunder’.” GradesFixer, 11 Feb. 2023,
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