The Unconquered - Essay on the Novel Anthem

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“I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul” (Henley). In Ayn Rand’s novella, Anthem, Prometheus’ society deems “the best in him” as evildoing, but Prometheus soon comes to the realization that this “sin” is in fact a virtue and that no other person can control him or his fate. Sin in the Anthem society is a broad thing, and is rather easy to commit. In this society, one mustn’t put ink to paper and write something that no other brother can see (Rand 17). Prometheus, who is known as Equality 7-2521 for the majority of the novella, keeps a journal and writes his feelings and ideas, and this is completely illegal in the society. This is the initial sin, or transgression, that Equality 7-2521 commits, and this eventually leads to more sins that are deemed even more terrible in the society. As Equality 7-2521 and his brother, International 4-8188, are performing their duties as Street Sweepers, they discovered a tunnel and Equality 7-2521 sinfully states, “We shall go down,” to International 4-8188 (31). These four words begin the big sin that Equality 7-2521 commits, even though International 8-8188 tries to stop him by telling Equality “It is forbidden,”. Equality knows this is a sinful action, but he continues; he is a very curious brother and he has always asked questions and wanted to know more and more. “We wish to write this name. We wish to speak it, but we dare not to speak it above a whisper. For men are forbidden to take notice of women . . .” and thus, the sin. “Liberty 5-3000 . . . Liberty five-three thousand . . . Liberty 5-3000 . . . .” is all Equality 7-2521 can think about, and yet, it is another transgression (38). Liberty 5-3000 is of the female gender, and Equality saw her one day when he was cleaning the street and fell completely in love, with her eyes, her hair and her body (32). This sin, this transgression, is perhaps the

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