Study Guide

Alas, Babylon Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

By Pat Frank

Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

You know what really puts a damper on your long-term plans? The nuclear apocalypse.

For Lib McGovern, her dream of moving to a big city is now impossible. There aren't any big cities left—they're craters now. Helen and Mark Bragg, in a similar fashion, have their plans for their family placed on the backburner in favor of simple survival.

Whatever they had hoped for prior to The Day, the characters of Alas, Babylon are forced to drastically reorient their lives in the face of nuclear disaster, though in a testament to the human spirit, they manage to build new hopes amidst seemingly hopeless circumstances.

Questions About Dreams, Hopes, and Plans

  1. Would you say that Lib's dreams for her and Randy come true? Explain.
  2. Compare and contrast Helen's expected life-path with the one she ended up with. How might this shift have impacted her?
  3. Why does the Easter service resonate so much with Randy?
  4. How do Randy and the other characters maintain hope?

Chew on This

Although Lib's dreams for a future with Randy don't exactly come true, the situation they end up in seems to have led to a healthier relationship.

The Easter services resonates deeply with Randy because it gives him something in the future to hope for, which is something he hasn't had since The Day.

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