Study Guide

Around the World in Eighty Days Steamships, Railroads, and Prime Meridians

By Jules Verne

Steamships, Railroads, and Prime Meridians

It's no secret that Jules Verne was a total geek for science. He had an uncanny ability to look into the future and imagine inventions that would, in time, actually come to be. So it makes a lot of sense that Around the World in Eighty Days would become Jules Verne's literary shrine to invention and innovation.

Phileas Fogg has a healthy respect for man's new ways of spinning around the globe, so much so that he wagers his entire fortune on the newer, faster, more convenient ways of traveling. There are many naysayers who tell him it isn't possible, just like there must have been when steam engines, paddleboats, steamships, and cross-continental railroads were first invented, tried, and opposed—there's always going to be someone raining on the parade of science. Even characters like Passepartout are at times doubtful that Fogg can really do it.

In the end, though, science prevails, and man's global-domination determination wins out. We're wondering what Jules Verne would think of Space-X.