WAR OF THE WORLDS

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H. G. Wells (1866-1946)

English author, futurist, essayist, historian, socialist, and teacher wrote The War of the Worlds (1898);

“Yet across the gulf of space, minds that are to our minds as ours are to those of the beasts that perish, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us. And early in the twentieth century came the great disillusionment.”—Ch. 1.

The invasion of earth by aliens from Mars, tripods attacking with Heat Rays and Black Smoke and the evacuation of London while people were terrorised in the surrounding countryside became one of the first internationally read modern science fiction stories.

Wells is often credited, along with Hugo Gernsback (1884-1967) and Jules Verne(1828-1905) as being one of the fathers of science fiction.

Forty years after its publication, on the night of Halloween 1938, Orson WellesMercury Theatre on-air radio broadcast of the novel caused widespread panic in New York City. Wells’ masterpiece spawned more invasion literature and inspired numerous movie adaptations and print sequels.

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The popular novel foreshadowed things to come for the human race: robotics, World Wars, warfare tactics including aerial bombing, use of tanks and chemical weapons, and nuclear power. Part prophet, part pessimist, cropped-llllll.jpgWells was a prolific author not just of science fiction but also fiction and non, utopian and dystopian short stories, travel sketches, histories, and socio-political commentary. While his most popular works tend to show a bleak future for humanity, he was not without his sardonic and wry wit:Every time I see an adult on a bicycle I no longer despair for the human race.

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