Individuality In Harrison Bergeron, And Who Am I This Time

1098 Words 5 Pages
The novel, Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro, and the short stories, “Harrison Bergeron,” and “Who Am I This Time?” by Kurt Vonnegut, all inquire about the topic of individuality. Throughout each story, both authors refer to this subject through character experiences. In all three pieces of literature, the characters comprehension of their own individuality is an important topic that is expressed. In Never Let Me Go, Kathy’s flashbacks show the journey of Ruth, Tommy, and herself growing up as clones, who begin to obtain insight into the reality of their dark future. The concept of individuality is first shown by Kathy, who learns to move on from her younger life to focus on the future for herself. For example, in the novel, Kathy decides …show more content…
“Harrison Bergeron” tells the story of a society that forces everyone to be equal, resulting in all human beings to have abilities that are equivalent to each other. For example, the narrator describes this population as, “Nobody was smarter than anybody else. Nobody was better looking than anybody else. Nobody was stronger or quicker than anybody else” (Vonnegut 7). This quote reveals that everyone living in this society can not be unique and separate, which shows that their individuality has been taken. Since everyone is identical, the main character, Harrison, decides to show his originality that has been hidden by rebelling against the rules that enforce equality. He announces, “Now watch me become what I can become!” (Vonnegut 12). Seeing that Harrison does not want his potential to be restricted anymore, he shows that he wants to be distinct and independent from everyone else. This character displays the significance of being discrete and fighting for individuality, even when it is limited the …show more content…
An actor, Harry, is embedded in the character roles he plays, but uses acting as a way to be himself. For instance, Harry is described to have a minimal personality outside the theatre. When Harry is not acting, he is described as, “He was tongue-tied, he was scared, he was shy- he was everything Harry was famous for being between plays” (Vonnegut 27). This quote proves Harry’s selfhood is only shown through the characters he plays, and he does not know how to be himself otherwise. For example, after finishing a scene, it is stated that “Harry put down the playbook, put on his coat and tie, and turned into the pale hardware-store clerk again” (Vonnegut 18). This quote supports that acting is the only way Harry can display emotion, but does not know how to be himself otherwise. Therefore, even though Harry does not show his independent personality outside the theatre, he uses acting to show his passion and individuality, which helps portray himself differently to others. In summary, the novel Never Let Me Go, and both short stories, “Harrison Bergeron” and “Who Am I This Time?” make references about the subject of individuality. Throughout each story, each character learns the importance of being independent from others through self experiences. Hence, all the characters discover themselves different, but is able to show the progress they made in the

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