Waldo Essay

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Science fiction stories are often characterized as stories about technology and gadgetry. We often expect science fiction to laud the merits of technology, especially the "golden age" of science fiction, such as Heinlein's early works, which have earned a reputation for painting a rosy picture of a future filled with time-saving gadgets and robots. "Waldo," however, is an early example of one of Heinlein's most prominent themes—that man should rely on himself and his own intelligence, not solely on technology.

First of all, Heinlein has created a central character who, by all rights, should be dependent on other people. Waldo has myasthenia gravis, a muscle disorder which renders Waldo quite incapable physically. He must use two hands in order to feed himself with a spoon, and even at that, the process is quite tiring and laborious. If Waldo were to remain on Earth at our normal...

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This section contains 2,350 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Waldo Study Guide
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Waldo from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.