"The Veldt"

"The Veldt" by Ray Bradbury seemed to disappear for a few decades between my high school reading list and the 21st century. I wanted to teach it again in January 2010 when I blogged about it as eco-lit on Blossom Jack. What made it topical again for me in 2010? Worth a re-read? I think I liked the way the story contrasts the African veldt with gaming technology. (Although the story's stereotypes of Africa are dated and disturbing.) How the children in the story are drawn to nature and wildness even in the most automated, unnatural setting-- as if the technology gave the children the power to connect to nature and the savage in themselves. Or is it that the technology flattened the family hierarchy without the parents knowing it. (Sound like your home?) In class we listened to Stephen Colbert read the story on NPR's Selected Shorts. That too prompted my re-evaluation of the text. What were your first impressions of "The Veldt"? Is the story's theme still relevant? Did it capture the near future, maybe 2020 when the nursery walls really can feel the children's emotions and empower them to create a world even too wild for their parents to inhabit? Sue Campbell

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