Many arguments have been made regarding the subject of new technology. Some people welcome new technological advances. Many “dystopian” short stories and novels (such as “There Will Come Soft Rains” and Fahrenheit 451) warn against new technology, and even suggest that self-aware machines will someday enslave the human race. Is this possible? Even if machines do not destroy humans, are they dangerous in other ways? For example, the animated film Wal-E depicts a future society in which humanity is so dependent on technology that we are nearly helpless. Your assignment is to write an essay of five to seven pages (and 1,250 to 1,500 words) on the subject of technology. You should focus on the following question: “Is new technology harmful or beneficial to human beings, or a combination of both? Will technology help or hinder humanity’s efforts to create a better society in the future?”
Your essay must have a title, a thesis statement, and at least five paragraphs. Use prewriting techniques to generate ideas if you need to.
The purpose of a persuasive essay is to convince the reader to do something (such as agree with your argument). I suggest you use the three persuasive appeals (ethos, pathos, and logos) we discussed in class to persuade the reader. You must use the following two sources in your essay: (a) the short story “There Will Come Soft Rains” from our literature textbook and (b) the novel Fahrenheit 451. Please use these sources on your works cited page (see next page). You may also use additional sources if you wish. Here are two possible ways that you can use these sources. Each of these suggestions are optional:
- How does Ray Bradbury, in his short story “There Will Come Soft Rains,” argue that new technology will affect society in the future? Does he suggest this technology will have positive or negative effects, or a combination of both? Is the technology in his book helpful or harmful to its users? Do you agree or disagree with the theme or message of his story?
- How does Ray Bradbury, in his novel Fahrenheit 451, argue that new technology will affect society in the future? Does he suggest this technology will have positive or negative effects, or a combination of both? Is the technology in his book helpful or harmful to its users? Do you agree or disagree with the theme or message of his novel?
Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451. Simon & Schuster, 2013.
Bradbury, Ray. “There Will Come Soft Rains.” Literature and the Writing Process, MLA Update.
Eleventh Edition. Ed. Elizabeth McMahan, et al. Bedford, 2018. pp. 332-335.