Thursday, February 19, 2009

Short (sci-fi) story from the New Yorker

Here is an excellent Outer Limits style short story from the New Yorker: The Invasion from Outer Space by Steven Millhauser. I really like the way it sets up the mood. But what can we say about the ending (read it - its only 2 pages long)? In order not to spoil the story, I have put my 2 cents in the comments section. What do you think?


Salman Hameed said...

I took it as a parable about an indifferent universe. Humans are the ones that seek and ascribe intentions to make sense of the world - but many a times we don't have intentional causes - simply events that affect humans but don't care one way or the other. That's why humans would have rather died at the hands of screaming aliens because that would have been easier to understand - but not the slow death under indifferent yellow organisms.

Of course, I am assuming that the yellow organisms just happened to cross the path of the Earth. You will reach completely different conclusions (and perhaps you'll be right) if you assume that this was a deliberate invasion.

Any way, I enjoyed the story - hope you did too.

Anonymous said...

I liked it too.. I was tempted to be a smart-ass and say something a creationist might say: "God must have sneezed.." But that would have been cheating. ;)

As a Christian who believes that God creates via evolution (even through blind, randomness) I have to say I'm inclined to see the existence of the human race as but one possible result of God's "creative will"... so intentionality is a tricky concept. I really haven't quite puzzled it out yet...

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