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Tuesday, June 04, 2013

The future as now

I am currently rereading Arthur C Clarke's novel "A Fall of Moondust" which was published in 1962 if my memory is correct..

Time is running out for the passengers and crew of the tourist cruiser Selene, incarcerated in a sea of choking lunar dust. On the surface, her rescuers find their resources stretched to the limit by the mercilessly unpredictable conditions of a totally alien environment.
The book is as I remember it and is an enjoyable read but of course I am struck by the anachronisms and the stereotypical nature of some characters.

The hostess is a woman and seems to fit the image of typical air hostess of the late 1950's early 1960's. When disaster falls and the ship is trapped one of the male characters asks the female passengers to help the hostess out with what would then be regarded as women's tasks.

When the supplies have to be rationed Cigarettes are mentioned. In the 50's and 60's Cigarettes would have been much more important than they are today. Look at a classic film of the period and compare it with a contemporary drama and you will notice how common cigarettes were.

I am enjoying the book but it is interesting how much of  its time it is.


1 comment:

Tricia Ryder said...

Interesting comparisons.. In the 1920's films smoking was prevalent too and very signficant - considered to be elegant!..

but I wonder how much of the tasks would be allocated on women's/men's work today.. I think there could still be an element of that!