Paper #2- King Solomon’s Mines
The portrayal of science vs. witchcraft and superstition as seen in King Solomon’s Mines is that Science is demonstrated to be superior to superstition in the book. However, just like many ancient legends and fairy tales, the “feminine” can be used for both good and evil. Gagool is obviously the evil side of femininity. The white men overcome the terror of Gagool and impress the Kukuana people through science in various instances. When the Kukuana people seek a sign indicating that the white men and their magic endorse Umbopa as Ignosi, their missing king, Good hatches a plan, executed primarily by Quatermain to use a convenient lunar eclipse as a sign of their power. Good, has an almanac handy and is able to pinpoint the exact same time of the eclipse.
The white men’s weapons are superior to the spears and throwing knives of the Kukuanas, and when discussing their effectiveness Quatermain couches their power in magical terms. He goes so far as to place a curse on his gift of a Winchester rifle to Twala, stating that it’s power will backfire on the user if fired at a human being. Twala apparently believes this so he does not attempt to use the weapon to succeed the battle for his throne. Alike though not identical, even as Gagool keeps her knowledge secret and reveals bits of it only in cryptic terms, the white men readily discern that her knowledge of an invisible passage into the treasure chamber is a simple matter of discovering the locking mechanism of the stone door, and when they are trapped within the chamber their understanding of airflow and architecture allows them to defeat Gagool’s intended doom.
The Natives are also described as superstitious people, ignorant of European technology. Quartermain gives his extra luggage to an old man before they travel through the desert. The old man is described as an “old thief, a savage whose greedy eyes I could see gloating over the weapons.” In...
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