Term Paper: Isaac Asimov's Robot's of Dawn

Pages: 8 (2332 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Literature  ·  Buy This Paper


[. . .] Asimov cleverly weaves complex characteristics and issues into the novel that make it seem realistic. This in extremely effective especially when dealing with the interaction of robots and humans. Asimov captures the various nuances and moods and paints the characters and scenes vibrantly.

Part of what makes a story good is conflict and Asimov certainly does not leave that element out of Robots of Dawn. The conflict arises in what is most important for the Earth people. Amadiro believes the Aurorans should spread to the other worlds because they are superior to any other civilizations. Fastolfe believed they should be banned from settled worlds. He knows if the Aurorans get the upper hand on settling the galaxy, the Earth will eventually die. The two honestly believe they are doing the best thing for humanity. As it turns out, Baley's discovering who deprogrammed Jander directly effects two things: saving the Earth and also saving Baley's and Fastolfe's careers. Asimov skillfully interjects opposition to create tension and suspense. By layering the story with important issues and intriguing circumstances, Asimov successfully engages the reader.

Baley, once on Aurora, becomes the subject of study by Fastolfe and his robot partner and subsequent close friend Daneel Olivaw. Later, Giskard Reventlov, provides them with first-hand knowledge of human beings other than Spacers, which significantly affects the future actions of Fastolfe and both robots. In addition, a popular politician is using the incident to discredit Fastolfe. If his opponents succeed, they will force him out of the senate, and most likely, all humaniform robots will lead the settlement of the galaxy. The reader is reminded that the problem with that scenarios is the robots would be able to create thousands more colonies just like planet Aurora. They would be safe, sterile, and never quite lending themselves to a growing human race.

Reventlov Giskard agrees to Fastolfe's views regarding the future of the Aurorans and the Earth people and it was this agreement which ultimately leads him to put Panell into a sate of stasis when he discovers that Amadiro had been trying to gain information on humaniform robots from Panell for his own purposes. He also did it because to encourage the assignment of Bailey to the subsequent investigation. By observing Baley, Giskard concluded that Fastolfe was right and continues to use his powers to encourage the mass emigration from Earth.

Asimov adds complexity to Giskard's motive for incapacitating Panell because he didn't agree with Amadiro's plans for settling the galaxy. He even admits to Baley that he would let Fastolfe's career fall to ruin to keep his telepathic powers a secret. This seems to be in conflict with the First Law of Robotics, which causes the reader to consider the repercussions of living with robots at all. Giskard's true nature is revealed at the end of the novel when it is reveled that he can read and influence the minds of others. Although Griskard used his ability according to the Law Of Robotics, he also used it to prevent others from discovering it. Only Baley, and Jander figure this out.

Although Giskard, after long and detailed discussions with Daneel, had recognized the need for a Zeroth Law of Robotics as proposed by Daneel as an answer to what both had come to see as the incompleteness of the existing Laws of Robotics. He was less able to cope with the abstract concepts which the Zeroth Law introduced, and went into stasis as a result of the lingering uncertainty of his decision to allow Earth to die, coming as it had at the end of a protracted series of difficult crises. Before freezing, he programms Daneel with his telepathic powers.

Amadiro experienced the same problem that Giskard did in that when he attempted to steal information from Fastolfe, he does not take the necessary steps to avoid harming other people. This represents a stressful situation for Baley, which Asimov describes wonderfully. He experienced fear and disgust with the whole situation to the point of becoming ill and eventually breaking down.

Robots of Dawn is an interesting view on what life with robots would be like in the future. Asimov illustrates a very convincing situation by building strong characters who are diverse and believable. By placing the reader in a realistic setting, the story moves along quite well. The story is not only entertaining; it makes a statement about society and how humanity, as eager as it is to create robots, has many hurdles to clear before that happens. Human invention requires a responsibility; one that Asimov seems to think that humankind may not yet be ready to handle. Robots of Dawn shapes a society that is forced to deal with the repercussions of its decisions, mankind may gain insight before difficulty.

Works Cited

Asimov, Isaac. Robots of Dawn. New York: Ballantine. 1989.

Fiedler, Jean and Mele, Jim. Isaac Asimov. New York: Frederick Ungar Publishing Company. 1982.

Knight, Damon. The Futurians. New York: John Day, 1977.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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