View Single Post
Old 01-27-2010, 04:10 PM   #29
Ea
Wizard
Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Ea's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,498
Karma: 5169119
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Denmark
Device: Kindle 3|iPad 2|iPhone 4|Sony 600
Quote:
Originally Posted by WT Sharpe View Post
That brings up the question of whether E. M. Forster could properly be termed a Luddite. On first sight, it seems obvious, but upon reflection, his message seems deeper than a simple tirade against technology. What he really seem to deplore is allowing technology to become our masters rather than remaining our tool.
I don't think he is/was a luddite. I think in all his stories he was mainly concerned with direct and true emotional experience. As he shows in this story, 'the machine' can hamper this experience. He doesn't seem to hate it, more bemoan that humans can no longer see the difference. The machine is not the problem - it is the way that humans react to and deal with the machine that is the problem. Macines are not our problem - it's our (in)ability to deal with those machines.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WT Sharpe View Post
The other aspect of The Machine Stops that gives me pause is Forster's attitude toward religion. From what I can gather, he was an atheist, but there are passages in the story that seem to lament the loss of traditional religion. Perhaps he was similar in that respect to George Santayana, of whom someone once said that he "believes that there is no God and that Mary is His mother."*

E. M. Forster was certainly not a simple man.
...
I don't know if he was either - but he grew up in a time when religion was much in dispute. I think if you really know the myths and the stories of religion (for example the bible) you are able to both say and understand some things at a greater depth with less words than if you don't know it. Just like using the words of a culture. I don't know what Forster wanted, but I think that perhaps his critisism of early 20th century British society, made him - to some degree - critisise religion as well. My feeling though, is that Forster mainly critisised society; it's ideas, culture, religion. I don't think he opposed religion in itself - but 'only' the impact it had on society. Perhaps that's also why he's so sarcastic with regards to the machine becoming a religion in this story.
Ea is offline   Reply With Quote