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- A children’s fable about a young chicken who, in the traditional version, believes the sky is falling after an acorn hits her head. Also known by other names including The Sky is Falling.
- The main character in this story, a hysterical young chicken; (by extension) someone who resembles the character.
- 1982, Donald A. Marchand; Forest W. Horton, Information Management in Public Administration, Info Resources Press, →ISBN, page 118:
- With so many “Chicken Littles” running around claiming the sky is about to fall, the men at the top normally cannot do much until “Henney Penney”[sic] and “Foxy Loxy” have also started screaming for help, or there is a convergence of alarm signals from a number of unrelated sources within the organization.
- 1995, David Peoples; Janet Peoples, 12 Monkeys:
- Dr. Railly, you've given the alarmists a bad name. […] Surely there's very real and convincing data that the planet cannot survive the excesses of the human race. […] Proliferation of atomic devices, uncontrolled breeding habits, pollution of land, sea and air, the rape of the environment. In this context, isn't it obvious that Chicken Little represents the sane vision, and that Homo sapiens' motto, "Let's go shopping," is the cry of the true lunatic?
- 2022 February 2, quoting Ian Joughin, “Antarctica’s ‘Doomsday Glacier’ keeps scientists at bay with iceberg and sea ice”, in The Guardian:
- “We need to take these glaciers seriously without sounding like Chicken Little,” Joughin said in an email.