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The Time Machine

The Time Machine

by H.G. Wells

Man and the Natural World Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #10

It is a law of nature we overlook, that intellectual versatility is the compensation for change, danger, and trouble. An animal perfectly in harmony with its environment is a perfect mechanism. Nature never appeals to intelligence until habit and instinct are useless. (10.3)

In The Time Machine, evolution is both our blessing (humans have evolved to be smart) and our curse (we will evolve to be dumb). Nature is value-neutral: it's not good or bad – it just is. So are people part of nature or separate from it? Did people beat nature? It seems like nature was in charge all along: people only beat it temporarily because nature allowed them to.

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