The Call Of Cthulhu Or A Portent Of Nuclear Destruction

1414 WordsMar 30, 20176 Pages
The Call of Cthulhu or a Portent of Nuclear Destruction Howard Phillip Lovecraft died in 1937 nearly a decade before the advent of the atomic bomb and the start of the nuclear age which brought a new sense of fear and paranoia that lasts to this day. Is it possible that within his works of science fiction and horror he, without knowing or realizing it, foresaw the coming of this new terror before it entered the minds of man? Could the titular creature in “The Call of Cthulhu” be a monstrous personification of nuclear destruction? Is it, that in trying to capture man’s fear of the unknown, he actually touched on a fear that man now knows today? Though Lovecraft wrote the story as fiction that he “states clearly and often that…show more content…
The narrator comments about a small sculpture of the creature Cthulhu as “of a form which only a diseased fancy could conceive” (Lovecraft 74) It took the brightest minds in America (and Europe) to come up with the Atomic bomb, and though many of them were working for the sheer science of splitting an atom, some were in it to create a weapon to use against the enemies of America and her allies. A nuclear explosion, much like Cthulhu himself is, with “one sight of the thing [is] enough to throw the assembled men of science into a state of tense excitement … whose utter strangeness … hinted so potently at unopened … vistas” (Lovecraft 79) and like a bomb “this thing, which seemed instinct with a fearsome and unnatural malignancy” (Lovecraft 80) Bombs aren’t good or evil except in the hands of the people who use them and only serve the single malignant purpose of destruction. Upon seeing the destructions of the first nuclear detonation in 1945, Robert Oppenheimer quoted the Hindu Scripture Bhagvad-Gita when he said, ‘Now I am become death, destroyer of worlds.’ This is an often misunderstood quoting, as he was referring to a warrior Prince, Arjuna, who approached his charioteer Krishna, who was actually an avatar of the God Vishnu, for advice on an upcoming battle where many of his friends and family were on the opposing side. The meaning of the quote is fairly simple,

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