Saturday, October 26, 2019

Essay --

Anthony Burgess once said that â€Å"The important thing is moral choice. Evil has to exist along with good, in order that moral choice may operate. Life is sustained by the grinding opposition of moral entities.† In his dystopian novella, Burgess discusses the topic of free will and reinforces the notion of moral choice and having the freedom to choose either good or evil. Alex starts off inherently evil, committing horrendous acts of terror, only to reveal change in the final chapter of the novel when he abandons the status quo and begins searching for a new life, one with a wife and a son of his own. Alex’s personal transformation results in a newfound freedom, which is attributed to the idea that goodness is genuine only when it is chosen, and that without moral choice man ceases to be man, but instead, he is rendered into a â€Å"clockwork orange†, a deterministic mechanism. Alex, the protagonist, becomes the first subject of Ludovico’s Technique, a rehabilitation method imposed by the state that causes a person to only commit acts of goodness. In a 1986 essay, Burgess writes, â€Å"If [a person] can only perform good or only perform evil, then he is a clockwork orange- meaning that he has the appearance of an organism lovely with colour and juice but is in fact only a clockwork toy to be wound up by God or the Devil or (since this is increasingly replacing both) the Almighty State.† Alex believes that humans are born and destined to be evil, needing societal pressures and education to become good. Alex does not view his inclination for evil as a result of his environment; rather, the dystopian setting is a result of his actions and the actions of other wrongdoers. Therefore, Alex can be seen as a victim of Original Sin, the Christian idea ... ...ho has desires to overthrow the government, ultimately uses Alex, who brutality raped his wife and led to her eventual death, as a sacrificial lamb for his own political agenda. Even the cats belonging to the old cat-lady, who Alex kills in his excursion to the Manse get reimbursed by taking all of Alex’s things. Alex is imprisoned to his past, until he assumes all responsibility for his former actions, and once he has paid the price for them, he is able to discover the newfound freedom that comes with personal growth and maturity. His desire for happiness: a loving wife, a son of his own, and a role in the working-class society, culminates in his transformation from a inherently evil child to a rational, good human being. (the 21st, which is significant, as the right to vote in Britain was granted at the age of 21 and is seen as a rite of passage into adulthood).

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