Analysis Of Neal Shusterman's Unwind

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In a society where undesirable teenagers are converted into easily accessible parts for those who are less fortunate, it is easy to pinpoint where the teenagers would face ghastly experiences and where society as a whole would be improved through transplants. However, not many people would even consider how society as a whole would be damaged psychologically by this practice. In a society like the one described by Neal Shusterman in Unwind, extensive, grueling issues would plague those who survive to the age of eighteen, most notably those from State Homes, those who receive unwound parts, and those related to an unwound child. The children raised in State Homes are subjected to many injustices due to unwinding, which could lead the children…show more content…
An example of the negative mental side effects of receiving a transplant would be best shown in the case of Cyrus Finch, who received a complete temporal lobe (Shusterman 126) which deals with emotional association (Smith 21). This leads him to steal without reason and causes him to feel things that he himself should not feel (Shusterman 138-139). In cases like his, the person’s issues highly resemble a new type of dissociative identity disorder, formerly known as multiple personality disorder, where a person’s personality seems to split into two distinct personas (“Dissociative Identity Disorder”). Even without receiving a brain piece, the people who receive transplants are still faced with the life of the unwound teen. This is made apparent when the Admiral gathers all who were given parts from Harlan Dunfee. Each person remembered feelings, thoughts, or other things that only Harlan would know, despite not receiving a part of his brain (Shusterman 332-335). These foreign feelings would leave people feeling incomplete and maybe even estranged, which if strong enough could lead to depression. Thus, even though transplants do great good in the healthcare system presented in Unwind, it also can cause many psychological issues in those that receive…show more content…
When parents choose to unwind a child, the entire family is affected. The siblings of an unwound child would likely go through extreme emotions (Shusterman 29-30). They could feel powerless because they cannot prevent the unwinding, and they could go into despair as one would expect from a child losing a sibling. These two combined, if felt strongly, could cause depression. Additionally, after witnessing a sibling being torn away from the home and then knowing that their parents might try to unwind a child again, the child might also experience fear, for his or her own life could be at stake in the future, which would only further tension in the family. Not to mention, the survivor’s guilt that could plague an individual who survived to eighteen though another sibling was not allowed to live to that age. On the other hand, the children are not the only ones disturbed by this occurrence. Even with making the decision themselves, parents may face internal conflict after the fact. A parent could regret the decision, and unwinding is something that could never be undone. Thus, the guilt could last for years, for it would be near impossible to atone for such an action. This could lead the parent to commit extreme actions, such as in the case of the Admiral (Shusterman 225). As shown, the decision to unwind a child is not a
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