The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas

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The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas

Do you find in the story any implied criticism of our own society?

In our society we can observe wealth and poverty, happiness and sadness, truths and lies, love and hate. All of those pairs are present every new day that comes in the world we live in and almost always they are together. In the case of the story “ The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” by Ursula K. Le Guin, it presents a society in which a city called Omelas’ happiness is possible by having one child live in darkness, “fear, malnutrition, and neglect.” In the city everyone knows the unfair life that this child has, even so, they do nothing about the situation. Why? If they choose to help him or her that is in bad conditions, the entire town would lose its “prosperity and delight”. The tale illustrates a group of people enslaved, like the child, by these terms that must be followed to keep the “wonderful” city.

The story and its description can be perceived as a critique of our own society, because it reflects the erroneous and unjust actions witnessed in our cities, colonies and countries. Approximately in the middle of the narration before the curse of Omelas is described Le Guin implies this criticism when is said: “Do you believe? Do you accept the festival, the city, the joy? No? Then let me describe one more thing.” With these words the author asks if the readers believe in that “fairytale” city to let us know that she knows that we are thinking of the story as a complete fantasy, but also this quote gives us a foreshadow that the narration is going to take a drastic turn and some readers may also think to discover that what is going to happen next is going to be more credible, and it could amazingly be something a reader in the society we live on can relate to. Indeed, it helped connect with the story because it can be found similarities with the plot of the short story and throughout our history leaders that have abused of their powers to get...
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