David Bowman ends up all by himself on a spaceship out by Saturn—which is kind of lonely. But his isolation is also a metaphor for the general bigness of space and humanity's lonely place inside it. At the same time, the novel also imagines that humanity is being watched or taken care of by aliens. The isolation in some ways is meant to make you realize how cool it is that the alien gods are out there watching over you.
Questions About Isolation
In what sense is Moon-Watcher isolated?
In what sense is Heywood Floyd isolated?
In what sense is David Bowman isolated?
Chew on This
2001 shows that humans are alone in the universe.
2001 shows that humans are not alone in the universe.