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The Chrysalids Essay

1339 words - 5 pages

. Plants are burned, animals are slaughtered, and human deviations are banished to the Fringes where they are out of sight, cannot reproduce, and will either die or live a miserable life. The main reason that the citizens of Waknuk desire such sameness and conformity is because of their superstitious and religious beleifs. They believe that God sent tribulations to "The Old People", and that was why their society was destroyed. Because they don't want the same thing to happen to their society, the people of "The New World" and of Waknuk believe that they must keep the gene pool free of mutations and deviations, so that everyone is made in the "true image" of God. Those who are not in the "true image", and those who do not do everything within their capability to keep society true to how God created and desired it are shaming God, and will force him to send tribulations to the town as punishment. The extreme need of the citizens of Waknuk to conform and follow their cultural superstitions drives them to do crazy things that are detrimental to their community, such as burn crops, kill livestock, and send away or kill their friends and family. Without this extreme desire to rid themselves and their community of differences, and to please God and avoid his wrath and punishment, the citizens of Waknuk could probably live fairly normal lives. They would have more food, more livestock, and probably more money from selling anything that they had left over. The Chrysalids demonstrates how diversity can be a good thing, and how dangerous conformity and societal superstitions can beThrough Joseph Strorm's harsh treatment of David, we can see how important the issue of conformity is to the inhabitants of Waknuk.Conformity in Waknuk is manifested in several ways, be it burning of Deviant crops, slaughtering of Deviant livestock and spreading awareness on the dangers of the Mutant to their peaceful society.Joseph shows this need for conformity in this passage by blasting David for even suggesting deviation from the Norm. The evidence for this is "you Blasphemed, boy. You found fault with the Norm," "This is a terrible thing, an outrageous thing. You are…committing blasphemy!" Joseph immediately accused poor David of having blasphemed and started yelling at him, without mercy or bothering to understand the truth.His treatment of David therefore shows how important conformity to the Norm really is to him.In the famous novel, The Chrysalids, by John Wyndham, the author develops ideas on the nature and effect of conformity through the society of Waknuk. Much of The Chrysalids revolves around conformity, superstition, and their consequences. The people of Waknuk are all extremely conformist. They live, and have been raised in a community where there is no room for diversity, individuality or variation. They believe the same things, live the same way, and anyone or anything different from the rest of them, and varying from their idea of "the true image"...

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