Good evening, and welcome to Episode 44 of the Darkly Lit podcast! We’ve finally made it to the end of The Island of Doctor Moreau, and that means it’s time to talk a bit about the book.
Island has long been one of my favorite novels of the era; partly because of the subject matter, and partly because of the complexity of what Wells was advancing in the story. The first reading of The Island of Doctor Moreau typically focuses on Well’s views towards science, but it’s really a much more complex story than that. Religion, its role in society, mankind’s status as the civilized creature – all of these are elements of the story that often get short shrift. Equally important is the role of the novel in light of what had been happening in the era it was written; the ethical debates raging around the use of vivisection in medical research, the rapid rate of social change, and the increasing incidences of a terrifying new kind of crime. We’ll be looking at all of these issues tonight, and more, after a few words from our sponsors.