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Is this the coming shape of future
Jan 24, 2002 10:57 AM 16708 Views
(Updated Jan 24, 2002 10:58 AM)



The bicentennial man deals with the story of a robot that wants to become a man. Truly awe inspiring it deals in psychology of not only robots but also men. Strangely it seems very real. What comes to mind is the slave era where some men considered themselves above others. Here is the same tussle but here instead of the slaves there is a robot, A Robot (Andrew) who for the first time has the ability to innovate. Asimov captures the fear and their destructive tendencies of man through this amazing story. The robot through his amazing display of innovativeness combined with superior analytical skill gives a lot of gifts to mankind. But humans remain human. Not until the robot decides to end his life do they decide to endow the robot with what he desires most, ‘ To be recognized as one by man’.

On the other hand the story deals with the struggle against odds and emerging out winner. Maybe if the ending was something different the story would have lost its touch. I can’t think of a more appropriate ending where everything is risked towards an ultimate goal. But it leaves us to wonder the costs involved.

The novel suggests not only what the future holds for man but reiterates all along that unless man overcomes his tendency to destroy himself we will go on witnessing many martyrs, known and unknown. The tendency to distrust is so strong in us that even so many years of so-called civilized world has not been able to eradicate it completely. What is strange is that though the plot weaves through a distant future, a person can easily identify with the story as being contemporary.

All along the robot suffers because he is hindered in the way of doing good to people by the people themselves. Why? They do not trust the robot. Similar to what attitude we have towards things we don’t understand. Instead of trying to understand we tend to obstruct the phenomenon. Maybe the story helps us baring the soul of human more then what man can gain by means of science.

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Bicentennial Man - Isaac Asimov