"The Veldt" Essay
Technology and its Bad Effect on Families
Imagine having so much technology that your kids start to think of it as their mother and father. The story “The Veldt” by Ray Bradbury uses many literary elements to show the audience that too much technology can destroy a family. In the story, two kids and their parents live in a Happylife Home that does their everyday tasks for them. The children’s parents, George and Lydia, are going to learn that giving their children too much technology is going to lead to bad events in the future. Through the use of conflict, setting, and characterization Bradbury conveys that too much technology can destroy a family.
By describing the conflicts between the Hadley’s, Bradbury conveys that too much technology can destroy a family. In the story, Peter gets into an argument with his dad who wants to turn off the nursery. It is a good example of the conflict between them two. He says to his father, “I wish you were dead” (Bradbury 7). This shows that Peter has so much technology in his life and now that his dad threatens to turn it off, he wants his dad gone. In addition to this piece of evidence, Bradbury explains the psychologist checking in with the nursery and what he finds out about it. “You’ve let this room and this house replace you and your wife in your child’s affections. This room is their mother and father, far more important in their lives then their real parents. And now you come along and want to shut it off. No wonder there’s hatred here” (Bradbury 6). This shows how Wendy and Peter have so much technology in their lives, that it is replacing their parents and creating a conflict between them. The kids don’t want their parents around anymore since they have this technology. Through the descriptions of the conflicts between the Hadley family, readers see how so much technology impacts them throughout the story.
Through describing the setting of the story, Bradbury conveys that too much technology can destroy a family. In the story, the setting is mostly the Happylife home that the Hadley’s live in and is described by Peter complaining that he may have to do tasks himself. “That sounds dreadful! Would I have to tie my own shoes instead of letting the shoe tier do it? And brush my own teeth and comb my hair and give myself a bath?” (Bradbury 5). This shows how the kids are so used to having technology do everything for them that when their parents threaten to turn it off, they are forced to think about what they might have to do and they don’t want it to happen. Furthermore, Bradbury explains the setting of the nursery as being the African Veldt. “He stepped into Africa. How many times in the last year…with murder in the heat” (Bradbury 3). This shows how this technology is expressing the children’s thoughts onto the walls of the nursery which happens to be the African Veldt with hungry lions. Also, the use of the word “murder” in the quote is a sign of what is going to happen to the parents later in the story. By setting the scene of the story with descriptions of the setting, readers can see how Bradbury expresses how too much technology can destroy a family.
Lastly, Bradbury demonstrates that too much technology can destroy a family by describing the character’s personalities. In the story, George shows that he can be serious when needed while in an argument with Peter about turning off the house. “I won’t have any threats from my son” (Bradbury 7). This shows that Peter is so spoiled that when his dad wants to take technology away from Peter, he threatens his dad which is going to lead to more family struggles later on. Additionally, Bradbury explains the psychologist’s visit to check the nursery and figure out what’s wrong. “How come you didn’t sense this before?” (Bradbury). This shows that since the last time the psychologist checked the nursery, the children have gotten more destructive minds and thoughts that create the African Veldt all because of how their parents have been treating them. The psychologist used the technology to figure out how the children have bad thoughts toward their parents, which is going to result in the downfall of their family. Through the descriptions of these characters’ personalities, readers see the negative impact technology has on this family.
Ray Bradbury demonstrates to the reader of “The Veldt” through the use of conflict, setting and characterization that too much technology they had in the nursery and the whole house. In the end, the kids end up killing their parents in a surprise ending. Bradbury makes a great point in writing about the future to not allow too much technology into this world because it could take over and lead to bad events.