Nowadays, environment issues have become as a big topic everywhere around the world. Did we ever imagine a fictitious town or planet around us? In 1900s, two famous writers gave bold imagine about how environment looked like twenty years ago. From our perspective that environment is better in old days so; however did anyone concern about environment twenty years ago? Let’s take look at two authors’ essays to discuss. The first essay is A Fable for Tomorrow, written by Rachel Carson (1907-1964), another one is “But a Watch in the Night”: A Scientific Fable, written by James C. Rettie (1904-1969).
To begin with I will provide a brief background about two authors. Rachel Carson who wrote A Fable for Tomorrow was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Even though Carson had master degree for zoology and genetics, she showed her interest in writing (Lear, 1998). Her remarkable book Silent Spring was published on June 16, 1962 A Fable for Tomorrow is one of essays in this book. She is famous writer who is only focus on environmental issues, whereas all of her four books emphasis environmental issues (Dasgupta & Mei, 2008). “But a Watch in the Night”: A Scientific Fable was written by James C. Rettie who was a natural resources economist. Rettie wrote many essays and studies and he became famous after publishing this essay. He wrote this fiction essay in 1948 (Dasgupta & Mei, 2008). Likewise, Carson’s essay is also a fiction story. Carson and Rettie were both born in 1900’s in America, so they lived in similar environment.
A Fable for Tomorrow describes a beautiful fictitious town locates in the heart of America. The town has most beautiful environment and healthy nature. Unfortunately, everything changes where nature in this town is destroyed when first settlers to build up for their lives. Then, a tragedy arises in the town (Carson, 1962). “But a Watch in the Night”: A Scientific Fable narrates a planet called Copernicus that has a motion picture machine where it can capture earth’s motion from Pre-Cambrian times to the present (Rettie, 1948). As we can see directly from titles where both essays are fables and concerning with environmental issues; however, they are written with different writing strategies, rhetorical modes, and writing styles.
First of all, Carson wrote A Fable for Tomorrow with compare and contrast writing strategy, whereas Rettie wrote “But a Watch in the Night”: A Scientific Fable with narration strategy. By definition, compare and contrast essay presents two subjects’ similarities and differences. Carson is telling environment changes of town within three different seasons: spring, autumn and winter in first and second paragraph of A Fable for Tomorrow (Carson, 1962). She describes “in spring, white clouds of bloom drifted above the green fields”, “oak and maple and birch set up a blaze of color that flamed and flickered across a backdrop of pines” in autumn, and “seed heads of the dried weeds rising above the snow” in winter (Carson, 1962, para 2-3). Clearly, Carson (1962) describes lovely environmental town in the heart of America. In contrast, town’s surrounding environment becomes worse and worse since settlers came, for example in paragraph 6, Carson (1962) states her personal response where “[t]he roadsides, once so attractive, were now lined with browned and withered vegetation as though swept by fire….Even the streams were now lifeless. Anglers no longer visited them, for all the fish had dies” (Carson, 1962, para 6). In addition, Carson (1962) illustrates present day’s surrounding evironment is more horrible than before’s by comparing status of hens, birds, fish, cattles, and sheep, etc; where hens are no more laying eggs, birds disappear in the town, and cattles died instead of vitality environment that Carson (1962) states in first one and two paragraphs (Carson, 1962). “But a Watch in the Night”: A Scientific Fable, on the other hand, is written with narration strategy where Rettie...
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