In the novella, Anthem written by Ayn Rand, the protagonist Equality 7-2521 emphasizes the importance of the many dystopian themes within the story. After the destruction of the Unmentionable Time, all knowledge was lost and a new society has sprung where individualism is banned. In their society, the government is in control of the population and people are conformed to uniform expectation. Since many of characteristics of individualism was stripped away from people, it is described that they live in a dehumanized state, where names are unspecified and decisions are made by the councils. In doing so, many of what was lost remained in the Uncharted Forest where all of mankind dare not to talk about it since they developed a fear the outside world.
There are similarities between Kurt Vonnegut’s short story “Harrison Bergeron” and Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451 that can be found in their characters, equality, government power, and overall themes. The first sentence of “Harrison Bergeron” starts by saying, “The year was 2081…” Both “Harrison Bergeron” and Fahrenheit 451 are set in a future society where everyone is made happy. The characters are another example of a similarity. George and Hazel Bergeron could be compared to Mildred and Guy Montag at the beginning of Fahrenheit 451.
Friedrich Ludwig Jahn said, “The secret of living in peace with all people lies in the art of understanding each one by his own individuality.” To find peace and live in harmony, people need to know and embrace each person’s individuality. Although the people in Anthem are supposed to be happy and peaceful, they are not permitted to have a sense of individualism. Ayn Rand’s novella Anthem illustrates the importance of each person in society having an individual identity to true peace and happiness. Rand expresses this philosophy through the main character Equality who discovers freedom and self-worth for himself.
The novel Anthem by Ayn Rand is set in a dystopian society where the idea of collectivism is prevalent. Collectivism is the idea of a group having more priority than any of the individuals in it. Throughout the novel, the characters refer to themselves as “we” instead of “I” and refer to each other as their brother men. Equality 7-2521 tells the reader that whenever they feel tempted, they are to repeat the phrase “We are one in all and all in one. There are no men but only the great, WE, One, indivisible and forever.”
Throughout the novella Anthem by Ayn Rand it can be seen that the lack of individualism in the society affects the people living in it. The characters in Anthem lack the individuality that is needed for a society to advance quickly. One example can be seen in the main character Equality. He learns very quickly compared to the other students in his class giving him an advantage which he cannot control. The lack of individualism and it’s issues can also be seen when Equality takes the light bulb to the council leaving them in awe and fear.
A famous businessman Mark Hopkins once said "Religion without morality is a superstition and a curse, and morality without religion is impossible." Mark Hopkins suggests that without God and set goals, morals are not possible and cannot be achieved without a religious background. Therefore, both works lack God and morality, leaving the people involved to have no purpose in life. Throughout the short story "Harrison Bergeron" by Kurt Vonnegut, unlawful and unjustly actions are taken by the corrupt government. People such as Harrison and George are being abused by the government in the name of equality.
American society is one where more people who openly acknowledge their ego (From the Greek word “I”) by using pronouns like I, my, mine, and me. This does not mean that we lack altruism or lack the capability of helping others, but it rather implies that we put our needs first. However, despite these cost, individualistic societies still have many people who have the means of enjoying themselves. Western societies are very pleasure-driven. Countries with a sense of Individuality feel more socially free, not confined to coarse values.
In the novel, Anthem by Ayn Rand, conveys a deep understanding of collectivism. Collectivism is when you give a group priority over yourself as an individual. The main character, Equality 7-2521, does not have an identity and cannot express himself as an individual. In Equality’s world they can not be self-centered and always have to think about others. Anthem takes place in the future, and the citizens are unaware of the past.
Imagine general uproar, mass confusion, and uprisings that were daily parts of the Russian Revolution. Visualize a young girl growing up in the midst of utter chaos. These events did indeed happen to a woman named Ayn Rand. Conflict and anger caused Ayn Rand to become very opinionated; hence, she authored the book Anthem. Making waves in the view of the public, Ayn Rand used extreme situations to illustrate the difference between the Collectivism and Individualism in her book.