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Communist Society In Ayn Rand’s Book, Anthem

1017 words - 5 pages

Final Draft

In Ayn Rand’s book, Anthem displays the struggle of the individual against a government that refuses to recognize the individual’s value, a communist culture. Equality 7-2521 is an intelligent and determined innovator who challenges to violate the rules of his strangling society and discover the forbidden word, the word that changes everything: “Ego”. By discovering this lost word, Equality rediscovers the idea of the individual, and the worth of the individual outside of the collective group of “we”. Ayn Rand names Equality and Liberty, Prometheus and Gaea because they are very similar to those gods. In recognition of his discovery, Equality renames himself after Prometheus and his love, Liberty 5-3000, Gaea, after the epic Greek myths that the two characters so strongly imitate.
Equality has several understandable comparisons to Prometheus. According to Greek mythology, Prometheus brought fire to mankind, which brightened their path and showed man the way toward civilization. “He took the light of the gods and he brought it to all men, and he taught men to be gods.”(Rand, Anthem pg.99). Also, Equality created a light bulb meant to alter his society’s light and power. Equality’s gift of light was created to illuminate mankind’s path and launch a period of invention and discovery, if it was accepted by the Council. “At first, man was enslaved by the gods.”(Rand, Anthem pg.101). Another comparable thing between Equality and Prometheus was their amazing sacrifices made for their values. Before revolutionizing human technology with the gift of fire, Prometheus knew he would suffer, and still he refused to sacrifice his ideals in the face of authority, for his actions, Prometheus was punished by Zeus for all eternity. Equality also knew over his months of research and experimenting that he would be punished severely if discovered, and still he could not stop his quest for knowledge. Even when he brought his invention to the Council and was received with demands for his execution. Equality’s only concern was whether the knowledge it of his invention would be shared and survive. The punishments of Equality and Prometheus show the suffering innovators seeking knowledge and progression must suffer in the face of domination and irrationality. More importantly, Equality 7-2521 is the reasonable equivalent of the great Prometheus from Greek mythology. In the same way that Prometheus brought fire to man, a revolutionary tool that led mankind out of prehistory and toward civilization, Equality brought “ego” back to mankind. In a world where the idea of the individual, and even the word “I”, had been wiped out, Equality’s gift to mankind was just as greatly needed as fire had once been. “Ego” would be the beginning for the new society that Equality planned on building with Liberty and all their friends. A society that celebrates the worth of the individual and man’s entire right to live freely. After the period of scientific failure...

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