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In The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury, which of the 'Illustrations' portrayed do you find most thought provoking and why?

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In The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury, which of the 'Illustrations' portrayed do you find most thought provoking and why? Ray Bradbury first introduces us to the Illustrated Man in Wisconsin, on a warm afternoon in early September. The Illustrated Man is shown to be large and well built, 'but now, for some reason, going to fat'. His outfit is odd-a woollen shirt buttoned to the top and with cuffs tight. Although this makes him sweat, he pays no attention to it. However, we are soon to learn why. He is covered from neck to toe with illustrations. And not mere tattoos-these move, tell stories, and predict the future in every minute detail. 'He was a riot of rockets and fountains and people,' Bradbury tells us, 'when his flesh twitched, the tiny mouths flickered, the tiny green-and-gold eyes winked, the tiny pink hands gestured.' That night, as the pictures begin to move, and to change, the author creates sixteen different stories, sixteen different visions of the future. Bradbury wrote 'The Illustrated Man' in 1952. This was a period in which (with World War Two having ended just seven years before) ...read more.


we can start all over again, on the same level'. I feel that this is the most potent and effective of the Illustrations, as it is able, by this reversal of roles, to show how white people would feel in the same situation of persecution and hate. Ray Bradbury expresses very strongly numerous other beliefs. His religious beliefs are clearly very important to him, and he shows them to us in The Man, The Long Rain and No Particular Night or Morning. All three are allegories about faith. The Man, although again set in space, is telling how man must have faith in himself and find God there, as he cannot be found in any physical place, as he shows with 'he'll go on, planet after planet, seeking and seeking'. He is trying to tell the reader that we may search and search forever, but we will never find him unless you look inside ourselves. This is an idea taken directly from the Bible. The Long Rain is similar to The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan in that nearly all of the protagonists lose faith in ever reaching their goal, but the one man with faith finally reaches his destination. ...read more.


Of them all the Illustration that I find most thought provoking is The Other Foot, as it addresses the important issues about racism which are as relevant as they were in 1952. Bradbury uses clever reversals of apartheid laws and ideas to create this strange world. 'FOR WHITES: REAR SECTION' is painted across the back of streetcars, and white people are allocated the worst seats in the theatre. Bradbury uses especially relevant images such as 'Cotton fields, burned. Cotton Mills, bombed out-' and an old oak tree used for lynching is destroyed. The people that Bradbury addresses were nearly all descendants of slaves, and for over two hundred after the abolition of slavery were still being treated in much the same way. Bradbury was writing this in the same period as Martin Luther King was active and his words were clearly very important. Its relevance today is still clear. It can apply to any race in any country, and would have much the same effect as it does for black communities. Although all of the Illustrations that Bradbury wrote have a message, I believe this to be the most thought provoking and important, especially at a time when, in this country, the BNP seems to be rearing its ugly head once more. ...read more.

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