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Free Study Guide: The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

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LITERARY CRITICISM / ANALYSIS: THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES

October 2002: The Shore

CHARACTERS

No one specific.



CONFLICT

Protagonist

The first waves of settlers, from rural areas and used to the silence and vastness that Mars offers.

Antagonist

Subsequent waves of settlers, now from urban areas.

Climax

The urban settlers follow after the initial waves, both awed by what they experience and better able to make the transition after the first wave have prepared the way.

Outcome

The colonization of Mars by Earthians continues afoot.


THEMES

Again, the progress of colonization. Also, the impact of Earthian affairs on the settlement: Americans are the only ones involved in the colonization, indicating wars have made it impossible for other nations to follow.


Summary

The first waves of settlers are from rural areas and adjust easily to the desolation of Mars. What should have followed were settlers from other nations, but those other nations were immersed in wars. As a result, the following waves were also American but now from urban areas, better able to adjust as settlements grow and the loneliness is not as powerful.

Notes

As with many other vignettes, this echoes the settlement of America by European settlers.


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