The Demise of Man

Prejudice is an idea that pre-exists in the minds of man and controls the actions that a specific person takes. Rod Serling’s words state that the thoughts that lie within a person, when built on the fear of the unknown, can be as harmful to society as war. When man allows his thoughts, especially those that are built upon paranoia, to lead him he begins to develop a distrust of the individuals in society, This, in turn, eventually leads to the collapse of a community. This idea can be tied into the views of Arthur Miller in “Why I Wrote The Crucible” and his own novel titled The Crucible. As Miller’s story evolves, we see how people suspecting others due to fear can drive apart a community and eventually leads to chaos. The concepts of prejudice by Rod Serling in “The Twilight Zone” episode entitled “The Monsters on Maple Street”  is supported by the ideas brought to light in The Crucible and the words of Arthur Miller in “Why I Wrote The Crucible.” Both gentlemen discuss how prejudice can influence the opinions of a person and lead to horrible consequences.

Serling’s discusses in “The Twilight Zone” how prejudice can lead to the eventual destruction of a community, and he illustrates this point in his episode “The Monsters on Maple Street.” This episode shows a town, which was once all friendly with each other, slowly tear each other apart as they become suspicious due to a paranoia of monsters living there. The idea seemed absurd, at first, but once unexplainable occurrences happen, it is no longer a ludicrous thought. One of the characters, Charlie, when asked to stop the viewing party on a man who is a suspected to be a monster, says that this suspicion would be nothing in normal circumstances, but this is an unusual circumstance, so the ideas of reality change ( “The Monsters on Maple Street”). Serling states, when referring to this episode,  “The tools of conquests do not necessarily come with bombs and explosions and fallout” and this is beautifully illustrated in “The Monsters on Maple Street” (Serling).

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