I recently typed an essay on the novelia Anthem by Ayn Rand for my English class and for a contest. I did not get to enter the contest, which saddens me, because I had not realized we had to submit the essay on our own via email. That is my mistake by far, but now i will know in the future how to enter a contest like the Anthem contest. We had three topics to choose from. I chose to discuss the causes I believe were making the people in Anthem die at an early age. The people in Anthem normally died around the age of 40, and were considered ancient if they lived to the age of 45. Both of which are very young ages to die at. The three main causes were that the people had no life, no health care, and no hope. The biggest cause that I leaned toward is that they poor people had not hope at all. Here is an exert from my essay:
“Life without hope is no life at all.” -Sri Chinmoy This is so very true. What are we without hope? What is the point of living if we have no hope? Hope is the base of all living, and the people of the City had not hope at all. The people of the City had no alternate paths, no free will. The people of the City were told early in their life the employment path which they would follow. They could not question the decision that the Council of Vocations made about their job, because “the Council of Vocation knows in it’s great wisdom where [they] are needed by [their] brother men, better than they can know in [their] unworthy little minds.” Aside from being told the job they would occupy, and that they were stupid and unworthy, the people of the city were also told who they would “mate” with. The City had a law “that men may not think of women, save at the Time of Mating.” No man or woman could love each other. At the time of mating men and women were assigned to each other and they are to conceive a child. The children would be born the following winter and sent to the house of the infants. No families to love each other just reproduction and moving on. No hope that a person would get to raise their child and see them grow into an individual existed at all. No one could be individuals, everyone had to think as a group, and never ever say the word I because saying I would get their tongue cut out and their death brought on by burning. The people of the City had no life at all, no hope, and no love. The only thing that the people of the City had to look forward to was sitting in the Home of the Useless and decomposing slowly. Why live if there is no hope that you will be remembered or live a full happy life? A life with no happiness is no life at all.
I loved the book Anthem, but I feel sorry for all the characters. I even felt sorry for the main character, Equality 7-2521. He got out of the City and away from poor life there, but he was put through so much when he lived in the City. He had hope and he had a soul, so the people looked down on him for such. In the end, Equality 7-2521 journeyed his was out of the town and made a huge discover in which he would use to start a new life and create a new civilization, but none the less his journey was atrocious. I could not live in the world created in Anthem, I would rebel or take off with Equality 7-2521 because love, faith, hope, and freedom are very important to me. They are very close to my heart.