The Star Essay

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In the following essay, Hollow discusses the theological philosophy espoused in "The Star," comparing the story to another story by the same title written by H. G. Wells in the nineteenth century.

Clarke's response to Wells' legacy can perhaps best be presented by comparing two of their stories, both of which happen to be entitled "The Star" (Wells, 1897; Clarke, 1955). Clarke's story does not seem, at least not consciously, to have been meant to allude to that of his predecessor, but both refer to the Star of Bethlehem, both contemplate the seemingly meaningless destruction of a civilization, and both finally are about whether the universe can be understood.

In Wells' story, a planetoid wanders into our solar system, where it collides with Neptune and ignites into a giant fireball, the new "star" of the title. As these interlocked bodies narrowly miss the Earth on their fall into the Sun...

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This section contains 1,424 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Star Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Star from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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