Analysis Of Repent, Harlequin By Harlan Ellison

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Reflective Essay 1 - “Repent, Harlequin!”
Harlan Ellison, like many writers, uses references from movies, books, and popular culture to enrich their works. This collection of works that is referenced is called the “megatext.” The science fiction “megatext” includes numerous works of science fiction, whether music, books or movies. Harlan Ellison’s “Repent, Harlequin! Said the Ticktockman” uses many references from various “megatext’s,” including George Orwell 's 1984, Henry David Thoreau’s Civil Disobedience, and several references from the popular culture of the 1950’s. By using these “megatext” references, Ellison creates a connection or community and creates a timelessness in his work.
With “Repent, Harlequin! Said the Ticktockman,” Harlan Ellison’s use of references to other works of science fiction, political documents, and to popular culture, brings the reader into a community of other readers. The first connection that is made is from Henry David Thoreau’s Civil Disobedience. This excerpt is included with the intention of using it as the foundation on which to build Everett’s, the Harlequin, world. This idea that there are three types of people in the world is present throughout the entire story. Starting at the top of the pyramid with the Master Timekeeper who is a representation of those who “serve the state chiefly with their heads” (page 146). The Ticktockman makes all of his decisions based on the master schedule that has to be kept. Being late causes the loss
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