silksteel: (tired)
Abstract.--The strategy theologians apply to their principal subject is not properly available to the writer of SF. The mystery of the Alien, unlike that of God, cannot be preserved by resorting to dogmatically imposed contradictions without betraying the true nature of science fiction. Yet presenting the Alien has its problems. H. G. Wells's approach in making his Martians physically hideous left them mentally and socially unreconstructed; their motives for invading Earth remain recognizable caricatures of human thinking and hence compromise their Otherness. However, the legion of imitators who have debased the example of The War of the Worlds in trying to outdo it in the realm of monstrosity have deposed of that problem by neglecting to furnish their Cosmic Invaders with any motive whatever only to supply themselves with another, by substituting a malign, inverted fairy-tale universe for the real world that SF should model itself after.

The best way out of such difficulties lies with the method the Strugatskys adopt in Roadside Picnic: of not-depicting the Alien. They never allow us a sight of the Visitors, only the concrete results of their "landing." About the latter the authors offer us plenty of details, which viewed microscopically, as it were, remain exactly that: details. Concerning the source and significance of the deadly objects that have constituted themselves as Harmont's Zone there is no end of theorizing; but the explanation finally favored Dr. Pilman's, is the one the title anticipates: that we are dealing with the debris from an Alien roadside picnic.

Within the context of such a hypothesis, the Strugatskys' focus on the lives of the "stalkers," who make perilous forays into the Zone in pursuit of profit, seems designed to discredit both sides in the meeting of two civilizations. The human beings behave solely in base and self-destructive ways, while the Visitors prove their murderous indifference to humanity. Unfortunately, however, the fiction does not exclude a possibility that undermines this intended meaning: that the objects were contained in a space-probe vehicle which broke apart upon nearing our planet; that consequently raining down on Earth, they arrived in damaged condition. This accident would account in the most economical way for all the "fictifacts, " but it does not comport with the authors' title analogy.

If their oversight in failing to rule out the hypothesis of a "damaged gift" is one defect of Roadside Picnic, the Strugatskys' manner of concluding their narrative is another. With Arthur and Redrick's quest for the Golden Ball, the fiction becomes fairy-tale-like--an unintended effect at odds with the book's overall impression. That so highly commendable an attempt to treat the theme of Cosmic Invasion should suffer from these weaknesses underscores the difficulties to be encountered in trying to carry out the optimal strategy of preserving the SF mystery through the very unfolding and presentation of the fictional events.
silksteel: (general)
"Кроме ультразвука, летучие мыши пользуются и обычными звуковыми сигналами, в основном для общения. Эти звуки обычно лежат на пороге человеческого восприятия. Дети слышат цвирканье и писк большинства видов, пожилые люди – лишь немногих. Частоты же, служащие для ориентирования в полете, лежат вне диапазона, воспринимаемого человеческим ухом, и слава Творцу: громкость писка некоторых видов, например, малайской летучей мыши, равняется 145 децибелам – как у взлетающего самолета."

Вот!!! А то в дошкольном детстве мне говорили, что я самашедшая, в ответ на мой рассказ как я видела летучую мышь и та пищала, когда в неё тыкали удочкой. "летучая мышь пищать не может, у неё ультразвуки!"
Нате, съешьте.
silksteel: (Default)
Знакомо? А  сегодняшним пятничным утром наткнулась на сайт  И завспоминалась...
Давненько это было. Свет долой, простыня на стене и!!!!
 "Молодильные яблоки", "Три царства: Медное, Серебряное и Золотое" ( в обоих  - потрясающе красивые рисунки!) , мега-хит - "Мумми-Тролль и комета" (чей текст знала почти наизусть, и потом, читая полный текст сказки, возмущалась, что "там не так было!!!!!!!!!!!")
Хранились бочонки с диафильмами в картонной коробке, на крышке которой фломастером было нацарапано предостережение о содержимом.
В один прекрасный день, по прошествии лет так десяти, я сняла крышку и обнаружила вместо заветного склада напольные весы..
Уцелел лишь "Мумми-Тролль".


silksteel: (Default)

June 2012

      1 2
3 456789
1011 1213 1415 16
171819202122 23
24 25262728 2930


RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sunday, October 22nd, 2017 04:49
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios