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“No doubt we shall never rest content until the great All is enclosed in a globe of transparent Astrilume.” (120)

“The Dome”, like many of Millhauser’s works, uses exaggeration as an element of the fantastic. The domes share characteristics with a greenhouse or a snow globe, creating an artificial environment that’s better for whatever is inside than the outside environment and can be entirely cut off from said outside environment. The semi-detached first person point of view gives the story the vibe of a historical document. This makes the narrator appear trustworthy and nonbiased. The society within the story is quite interested in both isolation and control to such an extent that the society itself is fantastic, also due to exaggeration. The quote is an example of exaggeration, a once individualized construction being expanded to the entire world. Through this use of exaggeration, Millhauser is able to employ the fantastic in a manner that could be realistic and could even conceivably happen, on a less exaggerated scale in the real world. This exaggeration brings up the question,  “How far do we need to go before it becomes fantastic?” that we often ask in class. A greenhouse is normal, a sphere of plastic that encircles the globe is not. At what point between the two do we decide it’s moves from normal, to strange, to fantastic? This question is not answered in this work, but instead allows the reader to have their own ideas on the subject.

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