Abuse of Power Within a Clockwork Orange

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Abuse of Power within A Clockwork Orange

by Christopher Borycheski

The choice between good and evil is a decision every man must make throughout his life in order to guide his actions and control his future. This element of choice, no matter what the outcome, displays man's power as an individual. Any efforts to control or influence this choice between good and evil will in turn govern man's free will and enslave him. In the novel A Clockwork Orange, the author uses symbolism through imagery, the characterization of Alex, and the first person narrative point of view to prove that without the ability to choose between good and evil, Man becomes powerless as an individual.

The symbolism through imagery proves how Alex's ability to choose between good and evil is his ascendancy over the innocent and the weak. The first symbol is the music to which he listens and loves. It is the only thing in Alex's life that he truly cares for. This music represents the element of his choice and free will. When his ability of choice is robbed in an attempt to better him, he loses his love for music in which he exclaims, "And all the time the music got more and more gromky, like it was all a deliberate torture, O my brothers . . . then I jumped"(131). The music that represents his freedom to choose is now gone. He is left without any reason to live. When he realizes that he is no longer a man because of his absence of choice, Alex decides to end his life. The author illustrates through Alex's violent actions, how they represent his abuse of power through his freedom of choice. Alex consistently chooses evil as a means to display his power over the innocent and the good. While beating and raping a young girl, he states with pride, "So he did the strong-man on the devotchka, who was still creeching away . . . in very horrorshow groodies"(22). This proves that he feels he must display his power through his abuse of choice. His love for violence symbolises...
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