Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Problem with Being Human

 In We, Zamyatin shows how the One State and Benefactor try to control every aspect of life; from waking up in the morning to the bell, to walking in lines in the surroundings enclosed by the Green Wall to allotting specific Sex Days given out by pick slips. It seems that D-503 has completely bought into the ways of the One State at the beginning of the book. D is content with his work as a builder of the Integral and loves spending his Sex Days with O even though he knows that O is also with R. The reader slowly discovers that D is different from everyone else in the One State. He continuously describes his surroundings as full of color (yellow, blue, green) and is completely infatuated with I-330. He goes against all of his beliefs for I-330. Instead of describing his actions with "we" he starts to use the word "I" and describes what his own desires and needs. 

Although D ends up going through with the Operation at the end of the book, the state itself is still chaotic. As we discussed in class today, I think Zamyatin is trying to critique how during this time leaders in Russia idealized communism. If they could just control each individual, everyone would be happy, however this is impossible. This is made clear when D expresses his individual desires. He also expresses his own jealously, another “human” emotion, when he sees O with R together.  Each person has his or her own desires and needs, and there is no middle ground that can make everyone equally happy. This is the human way. Therefore, there seems to be no right answer on how to run a state or even just a group of people. Look at the problems within our government today! 

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