Living In A Dystopian Society

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In the novella Anthem, the story, told in the eyes of a 21 year old man named Equality 7-2521, not only shows the horrors of living in a dystopian society, but also the naive opinions the people around him have over the ways things are run. With such a society, the reader discovers more of the cities many unique rules and regulations as the early chapters, or journal entries, move forward. By the end of the story, however, Equality has made his way out of the city and dreams of a new society, based off of books he found from the Unmentionable Times, or in other words, before the existence of the city in which Equality used to live. Anthem portrays a dystopian society with rules and regulations unlike any other. This can be seen in everyone…show more content…
Equality brings up multiple times in the book that in this city, everything must be done in the name of, and to better all of the people around him. Every decision, action, or discovery is for, and (supposedly) known by all who live in the city, making one’s own being shared with everyone else. This also leads to another rule, which is the prohibiting of friendship and love. Equality explains, “for it is a transgression… to love any among men better than the others, since we must love all men and all men are our friends” (Rand 30). There are many instances where Equality must secretly show his appreciation for specific people, sometimes without speaking, even even then he had a huge risk of getting in trouble. Finally, a very unusual regulation this city has is its form of punishment. Equality gets taken to Palace of Corrective Detention for being late to work one day, and refusing to give a reason why. In the palace, people are whipped and then taken to a cell. Everyday the prisoner is asked if they would like to admit to their actions, or speak of what they refused say when they were first taken to the palace, but receive no further punishment if they decline. Though this aspect of punishment in a dystopian society…show more content…
Equality explains that he wants a society filled with his few secret friends and the misfits of the city he ran away from, that practices the old ways of living from the Unmentionable Times. “Here, on this mountain, I and my sons and my chosen friends shall build our new land and our fort” (Rand 104). This, obviously, eliminates the idea of equality not allowing friendship and love in this new society. The next rule Equality shows that he would like to eliminate is describing one’s individual self as “We,” in fact making it seem shameful to refer to oneself as such. “What brought it to pass? What disaster took their reason away from men? ...The worship of the word “We” (Rand 102). Finally, the idea of punishment could have differences in opinion. Arguably, it seems Equality wouldn’t have the desire to punish others in this new society (after all he faced the punishment himself, didn’t he?). However, it is implied that he wouldn’t want to have any true barriers between his city and others, just like the city he escaped from. He explains that people will soon be drawn to and from it over time, which readers could assume is without threats within his city. “And it will become the heart of the earth, lost and hidden at first, but beating, beating louder each day. And word
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