IN THE PAST 100 years, a fictionalised world has emerged from the imagination of an author named Jules Verne.
Verne’s fictionalised version of the Earth was a world that had become unrecognisable to most people by the mid-19th century.
A series of devastating and seemingly random events would transform this world into something different, and change the lives of all those living in it.
It would be the first time in history that a real human being had made a living outside of the human race, and it would become a source of fascination for those of us who followed his works.
The world’s population exploded, and the world’s natural resources were exploited to the point that by the late 20th century, it was considered a disaster zone.
The first wave of climate change was inevitable.
But it was not until the early 20th Century that the consequences of this changed.
As Verne wrote in his book The Wind in the Willows, ‘I believe that the world will not live again until a civilization has come into existence’.
A world full of science fiction and fantasy and the idea of human possibility, but one with a real future.
It is a story of a world with a future that is not what most people would consider an ideal, and one that is a far cry from what the human beings who created it would have hoped for.
And for the first 200 years, the world was a place that was ruled by a tyrannical ruler named Napoleon Bonaparte.
In fact, it is a world where a man who would become the greatest statesman in history could become the most feared and despised dictator of all time.
A man who was able to use science fiction to create the illusion of a post-colonial world.
A world in which the concept of the United States was almost unthinkable.
A time when the concept that a nation had the right to self-determination was taken for granted.
But this was not a world of utopian ideas and ideals.
A reality where the power of science was seen as something to be feared and to be opposed.
A place where an empire had come to power and where the US stood at the forefront of that empire.
The story of how Verne made his fictional world into reality, and how the fictionalised future changed the face of the world, is one that we will never know.
This article was written by RTE’s editor and was originally published on March 6, 2017.
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