Study Guide

Jurassic Park Man and the Natural World

Man and the Natural World

DR. ALAN GRANT: They're moving in herds. They do move in herds.

Many prehistoric traits can only be hypothesized by archaeologists and scientists. Did dinosaurs have feathers? Were they warm-blooded? Who knows? While it is believed that many dinosaurs moved in herd groups, Alan Grant can only confirm it in Jurassic Park—where he can see the dinosaurs live in their natural habitat.

DR. HENRY WU: There's no unauthorized breeding in Jurassic Park.

Yeah, right. Try as they might to thwart nature, the scientists at Jurassic Park ultimately fail.

DR. IAN MALCOLM: What's so great about discovery? It's a violent penetrative act that scars what it explores. What you call discovery, I call the rape of the natural world.

Ian Malcolm makes a good point here: The scientists of Jurassic Park didn't stumble across a live dinosaur; they created them. What they're doing is against nature and just might destroy it—and them—in the process.

DR. ELLIE SATTLER: These are aggressive living things that have no idea what century they're in and they'll defend themselves, violently, if necessary.

We think the dinosaurs would be violent no matter what century they're in. They're not flying into a rage because they don't understand UNIX; they're violent because they're naturally destructive predators.

DR. ALAN GRANT: I don't want to jump to any conclusions, but look, dinosaurs and man, two species separated by 65 million years of evolution, have just been suddenly thrown back into the mix together. How can we possibly have the slightest idea what to expect?

One big problem here is that the scientists didn't anticipate what to expect. They intended to keep man and dinosaur firmly separated by electric barriers. When the barriers go down, the real battle between man and nature begins.

DR. IAN MALCOLM: God creates dinosaurs. God destroys dinosaurs. God creates man. Man destroys God. Man creates dinosaurs. 

DR. ELLIE SATTLER: Dinosaurs eat man. Woman inherits the earth.

Dr. Malcolm describes an unexpected cycle, which Dr. Sattler brings to a humorous conclusion. Unfortunately, if she doesn't watch her step around those raptors, she might not live to inherit anything.

LEX: Don't let the monsters come over here. 

DR. ALAN GRANT: They're not monsters, Lex. They're just animals. They're herbivores.

This little fact is important to remember and easy to forget. The dinosaurs may seem like scary creatures out of a monster movie, but in reality, in the grand scheme of nature, they're no different than a lion, a tiger, or a bear.

DR. ALAN GRANT: Now, some West African frogs have been known to spontaneously change sex from male to female in a single-sex environment. Malcolm was right. […] Life found a way.

Want to know more about this fascinating aspect of nature? Here you go.