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The Invisible Man

The Invisible Man


by H.G. Wells

The Invisible Man Science Quotes

How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #7

"But consider, visibility depends on the action of the visible bodies on light." (19.24)

Although we're tempted, we're not going to quote this whole chapter. Here, Griffin explains all about the science of optics and how he made himself invisible. If you ever wanted to know anything about refractive values, this is for you. Wells could have probably left this chapter out, especially because it slows down the story a bit. So why put in this long scientific explanation? How does it change the way you read this story?

Quote #8

"And you know the knavish system of the scientific world. I simply would not publish, and let him share my credit." (19.33)

This is another reminder that science is a community, with its own rules and traditions. These are some of the traditions that drive Griffin to do what he does (hide his research, test on himself, etc.). Turns out the Invisible Man is a bad member of both the scientific and the non-scientific communities. Looks like you're 0 for 2, Griff.

Quote #9

"[...] but she woke while she was still misty, and miaowed dismally, and someone came knocking. It was an old woman from downstairs, who suspected me of vivisecting." (20.21)

Vivisection was a real hot topic in England in the nineteenth century. (Wells may have written an entire book about it, actually: check out The Island of Dr. Moreau.) In The Invisible Man, it serves to raise questions about ethics in science. For instance, Griffin is a bad scientist (he doesn't publish his work), but he's also an unethical scientist (in that he does strange experiments on living creatures). Do you think Wells is trying to make a point here?

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