Words Brought to Life
English- 4th Period
November 30, 2009
Ray Bradbury, well-known American author, playwright, and poet, created his success on no more than his high school diploma. He did, however, learn many valuable lessons in life which he incorporates in his works. Ray Bradbury uses figurative language such as irony, personification, and imagery to artistically present his vision of life’s morals.
Bradbury’s use of irony in his pieces establishes how mankind commonly contradicts himself. In “The Veldt”, George and Lydia hear screams that “sound familiar” but ignore them. The couple also finds their wallet and scarf and disregards how these items were chewed and covered in blood when they found them. George and Lydia receive their last clue when they enter the nursery and see the lions in the background feasting on an unknown prey. “They’ve just been eating… [but they] don’t know what.” Ray Bradbury turns these foreshadowing events into irony when the parents are killed by the lions. It is ironic that they have seen the lions devouring something, saw the wallet and scarf, and heard the screams but do not realize that they were the lion’s meal and it was their screams that they heard and the scarf and wallet were chewed by the lions and covered in their own blood. Bradbury also uses irony in the “Happiness Machine.” Leo Auffmann created a machine which he claimed brought happiness to the occupant. He convinced his wife to “try it on” but when she got out she shouted, “It lies, that Sadness Machine.” This is ironic because what Leo thought was a Happiness Machine is really a Sadness Machine. Leo then finds that true happiness cannot be created by a machine but is found in the heart of his family. In “There Will Come Soft Rains”, the house reads a poem to the emptiness where a family once was. The poem explains how nature “would not mind…if mankind perished utterly.” It is ironic because the poem is warning the family how...
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