Date(s) - 09/04/2016
‘Moxon’s Master’ by Ambrose Bierce
The master, Moxon, who creates a chess-playing automaton, boasts to the narrator that even though machines have no brains, they can achieve remarkable things and should be treated just like men of flesh and blood. After a thorough discussion about what it is to be ‘thinking’ and ‘intelligent’, the narrator leaves. When he returns, he finds Moxon playing chess with an automaton. Moxon wins, and the automaton kills him in a fit of rage. The narrator later questions whether what he saw was real.
‘The Man that was Used Up’ by Edgar Allan Poe
An unnamed narrator is fascinated by Brevet Brigadier General John A.B.C. Smith, war hero and the personification of masculine perfection. When he visits the general’s home, he sees nothing but a strange bundle of items on the floor. The bundle however begins to speak. It is the general himself, and his servant begins to assemble him piece by piece. Limbs are screwed on, a wig, a glass eye, false teeth, and a tongue, until the man himself stands whole.
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