2January 1999 Rocket Summer Sets scene for the rest of the novel Introduces the exploration of Mars“Summer” image is a rebirth from winter – like a rebirth for the people of Earth – comes from technologySets up a comparison of later changes on Mars to the changes on Earth created by the rocket.Rapid temperature change parallels the rapid change humanity is about to go through – foreshadowing???
3February 1999 Ylla Describes Martian life and lifestyle Differences and similarities between humans and Martians are highlightedDomestic problems/issuesMale dominanceMisconceptions about the solar systemJealousyThis humanizes the Martians: allows the reader to identify with them.Describes the demise of the 1st human expedition: foreshadows the difficulties humans will have.Trivial nature of the cause of 1st expedition’s death makes the effort to go to Mars appear less important.
4August 1999 The Summer Night Singing songs in EnglishEarth culture coming to MarsEstablishes telepathic communicationLord Byron’s poem “She Walks in Beauty . . .”Challenges traditional notions of beautyThis opens the reader to the beauty of the Martians and Martian culture.Makes the terrible end of Martian culture more tragic.
5August 1999 The Earth MenDescribes the failure and death of the 2nd human expedition to Mars.Humorous, wacky events aggravate and frustrate the reader.Reinforces the humanization of the Martians – they are as petty and screwed up as humans.Trivial nature of the cause of 2nd expedition’s death makes the effort to go to Mars appear less important.Highlights the level of instability in Martian culture – comment on human culture??? Foreshadows eventual human research into psychosis.Closed-mindedness – comment on humanity???
6March 2000 The TaxpayerProvides/explains human motivation to go to Mars – war is coming.Sets up the 3rd expedition to Mars.Taxpayer feels entitled to go to Mars – commentary on human feelings of entitlement.
7April 2000 The Third Expedition Martians perpetrate a mass hallucination to defend Mars against human settlement.Mars finally sees Earth as a threat.This is a turning point – Martians finally reveal their superiority.This sets up the parallel of Europeans vs. Native American’s.Humans unknowingly bring disease.
8June 2001 “—and the moon be still as bright.” Spender is concerned about keeping Martian history and culture intact.Most Martians are dead due to Chicken Pox.Shows examples of undesirable human behavior:DrunkennessHatredViolencePollutionLack of appreciation for other cultures: e.g. CortezCrush dissenting opinions – send Capt. Wilder to Jupiter in later chapters.
9June 2001 “—and the moon be still as bright.” Ironic that Capt. Wilder kills Spender because the Capt. is the only other human who cares or understands the importance of Martian culture.Spender’s actions support Bradbury’s notions that humans are not entitled to colonize Mars.In this sense, critics generally agree that Spender serves as Bradbury’s voice.This story parallels the colonization of new worlds by Europeans – U.S., Australia, Africa, etc.
10August 2001 The Settlers Opening lines parallel Tale of Two Cities Outlines human reasons for coming to Mars.Shows that people are coming to colonize – exploration is over.Government sanction parallels the WWII recruiting posters – propaganda???Loneliness felt by settlers makes the move feel unnatural and improper to the reader.
11December 2001 The Green Morning This chapter parallels the Johnny Appleseed story.Benjamin Driscoll plants trees to generate oxygen and make the atmosphere breathable.Bradbury uses liberal amounts of poetic/artistic license in this chapter:Plants grow over nightPlants grow all over the surface of MarsTrees, grass, bushes, etc all grow without difficulty, in spite of the fact that Driscoll only planted trees.Note: this adds to the irony of destroying Mars for the sake of Earth. This destroys Martian ecology and makes it Earthlike.At the end of this story, Driscoll’s fainting shows that Mars continues to resist this transformation.
12February 2002 The LocustsLocusts are an insect that devour and destroy large areas of cropland.Bradbury makes the parallel that the human settlers are consuming all of Mars.Furthers the notion of destroying all that is Martian, and transforming it into something Earthlike, and familiar.Allusion to biblical plagues visited on the Egyptians in Judeo-Christian tradition.
13August 2002 Night MeetingTomás Gomez meets up with a Martian from a different time – time warp?Tomás Gomez is an ordinary human (no special qualities) who has a conversation where he has to explain what humans have done to an ordinary Martian.This makes the Martian culture real to the reader, and evokes pity at its loss.This story lays the blame on the settlers, not on the Government that organized the trips.
14October 2002 The ShoreFirst men – from the American frontier, Cattlemen, ranch hands, explorers, etc. Bradbury highlights their roughness, abilities, and their preference for solitude.First women – prostitutes.Second men – Urban poor from US cities.“Roman candles” foreshadows fall of the US, like the Roman Empire.Americans are running away from war, but will eventually have to return to deal with it.
15February 2003 InterimThey have now destroyed and replaced the Martian cultureEverything the Martians tried to prevent happened anywayIntroduces religion to Mars
16April 2003 The MusiciansMakes it seem as though the Martians are a joke-the kids are making fun of themAnother chapter that evokes pityThe Firemen start fires rather than putting them out – reoccurring theme in Bradbury’s booksAlso, Firemen burning any traces of the Martians making it appear there were no Martians to begin with
17June 2003 Way In the Middle of the Air All the African Americans leave together to go to MarsEnding makes it seem like the African Americans just disappeared as opposed to leaving. e.g. all their belongings are scattered everywhereBradbury describes a lot with the colors black and whiteStory is told through the eyes of a racist non-sympathetic main characterLots of biblical references – the assumption of the oppressed into heaven; the oppressors are left behind.
18The Naming of NamesMartian names seemed to mean more than just a title, but the rockets/humans destroyed these and replaced them with mechanical/metal namesNaming shows ownership – humans give names to establish ownership of MarsCompletion of Spender’s dream dyingSets up the next storyStart implementing policies from Earth
19April 2005 Usher IIDeals with the censorship coming from Earth to MarsShows Humans don’t have any respect for their own cultureBradbury makes death seem a lot less serious, just like in the first couple chaptersUses a lot of Poe in this chapterThe Red Death symbolizes the ending of Stendahl’s “fun”. The house falling symbolizes the end of everything he had done.
20August 2005 The Old OnesAfter everyone else has come to Mars, now elders come.Shows that Mars is open to just about everyone.Now that old people have come to Mars, it seemed to have lost its “appeal”.
21September 2005 The Martian Symbolizes the end of the Martian race Illustrates how everyone needs to belong somewhere and how the Martians tried to co-exist, but were not able toMakes a strong statement about human selfishness and its destructive power
22November 2005 The Luggage Store Main purpose of this story is to set up that there is a war on earthSwitches between people leaving Earth to go to Mars, to people starting to leave Mars to go back to EarthTheme of families and families sticking togetherReinforces the notion that humans never saw mars as “home.”Adds severity to the destruction of the Martian culture – humans destroyed it, and then left.
23November 2005 The Off Season Brings back Sam Parkhill-allows reader to know what type of character he isGoes back to theme between husband and wifeMartians final goodbyeMartians are trying to give Parkhill the deed to half of MarsMartians trying to show him he has a place on Mars when the Earth ends
24November 2005 The WatchersMars receives a message from Earth asking them to come home; Australia has been atomized.Most Humans have been on Mars for 3-4 years, and still perceive Earth as “home.”Humans begin thinking about, and showing concern for, loved ones on Earth.Sets up the idea that Mars is abandoned (or nearly so).
25December 2005 The Silent Towns Walter Gripp appears to be the only one left on Mars – he frantically tries to find others. ‘Last man alive’ archetype.Discovers Genevieve is still on Mars – allusion to Adam and Eve.Maybe this chapter is asking is it worth it to restart a race with Genevieve? She is both physically unattractive and self-centered.Humor comes from irony of the last two people on Mars being unappealing to one another.There seems to be no one else left; the reader can assume they all traveled back to Earth.Gender stereotype is worth noting – women want marriage and men don’t.
26April 2026 The Long YearsCpt. Wilder comes back to find Mr. Hathaway and family.We find out Wilder has been to Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune, exploring there – reveals there is nothing else out there (in space and on other planets) for Humans.Humans silence Wilder’s dissenting opinions about human effect on Mars by sending him far away – exile.Hathaway’s loneliness leads him to re-create his family, using robots.Hathaway ends up dying at the end of this chapter, and after his death Cpt. Wilder leaves Hathaway’s family on Mars.He cannot kill them because he believes it is the same as murder. Science Fiction trope of artificial intelligence.
27August 2026 There Will Come Soft Rains Automated house runs the same way as if people were there even though no people are living there anymore.The house is the main character of the story.Poem shows that nature won’t care if humanity dies. Points out the war on Earth doesn’t matter.Despite the effort from the house, it could not save itself from being destroyed.Artificial intelligence.
28October 2026 The Million-Year Picnic William Thomas brings his family to Mars, in their own rocket, to get away from Earth. After arriving, Thomas blows up the rocket so no one will find it.One of Thomas’ friends also came to Mars in a different rocket with four daughters. Thomas and his friend decided they would start anew on MarsAt the end, Thomas reveals to his children that they are the new Martians – Noah’s Ark story??? Adam and Eve???Earth has been destroyed