Harrison Bergeron Book Analysis

Categories: Harrison Bergeron

Have you ever heard of Dystopian Literature? Well if you haven't Dystopian literature is a genre of science fiction that tries to make up a horrible world or tries to predict a horrible future that we get to look forward to. In a Dystopian world, everyone is treated equally in every which way. Nobody is better looking than anyone else. Nobody is stronger or quicker than anyone else. As I look back into the short story “Harrison Bergeron” there are a few things that stand out to me, such as how the citizens are being treated and what they are surrounded by.

Many characteristics in this literature stand out in the short story such as citizens living in a dehumanized state, information, independent thought, and freedom restricted, and the natural world being ruined and destroyed. The citizens in the short story “Harrison Bergeron” were dehumanized. People who were pretty were masked. The ballerinas were dehumanized just like all the other pretty people.

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They were burdened with sash weights and bags of bird poop. The dancers were also masked and handicapped. Throughout their performances all you could hear is their different handicap equipment hitting the ground. They were treated like this so that the people who were watching them would not feel any less of themselves. The handicap General is praised for doing the dancers like this because it follows the tradition. This is a great example on how citizens in a Dystopian world are treated in a dehumanized manner.

Citizens also had their independent thought, information, and freedom restricted.

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A character in the book names George was treated badly. His intelligence was way above the normal so the government makes him wear a handicap radio in his ear which was tuned to a government transmitter. Every few seconds it sends out very sharp noises so he could not take unfair advantage of his brain. It’s very unfair that people are being treated like this because they are very intelligent. George believes that if he tries to take the transmitter out of his ear he can get away with and other people will try to do the same. Which will result in everyone being back to the dark eyes and everyone competing against each other. In my opinion, this can also be happening because the government may think that if smart people can use their brains to a good advantage they will find a way to take over or hurt their poor government. This shows how citizens are restricted from their independent thought in a Dystopian world.

Lastly, the natural world is ruined and destroyed. During the short story, Harrison began to grab a couple of the dancers and waved them like batons as he sang the music as he wanted it to play. The other dancers began to like that so they started to get rid of their handicaps. The sound of the music was beautiful. They got to spin, gamble, whirl, and caper. They were dancing better than they had ever danced before. They leaped so high they kissed the ceiling. They were so happy they kissed each other for a long time. It was then when the Handicap General Diana Glampers walked in with a loaded gun. She aimed it at the dancers and demanded that they put their gear on as soon as possible or she would shoot them. It’s impossible to show your true beauty in a dystopian world without facing any consequences.

In conclusion, there are many different characteristics of Dystopian Literature that are expressed in the short story “Harrison Bergen”. Those characteristics are citizens living in a dehumanized state, information, independent thought, and freedom restricted, and the natural world being ruined and destroyed. All those characteristics are listed throughout this. The ballerinas are treated badly and they must be handicapped. The people are very smart have to be hooked to a government translator so they don’t take advantage of their smartness. They also are punished in very cruel ways if they disobey any of the rules in this society.


Updated: Dec 12, 2023
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Harrison Bergeron Book Analysis. (2021, Aug 04). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/harrison-bergeron-book-analysis-essay

Harrison Bergeron Book Analysis essay
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