The Chrysalids Essay on Judgment, Discrimination, and Alienation

Topics: John Wyndham, Psychology, Anxiety Pages: 3 (811 words) Published: December 29, 2010
In The Chrysalids by John Wyndam, Waknuk is a community throughly brainwashed by tribulation that causes the citizens to believe “normality” is the main focus in life. Consequently, Waknuk became a hostile environment totally intolerant of differences, which causes judgment, discrimination, and alienation to occur in everyday life. This quality of life is clearly evident firstly by the thought group's constant threat of being discovered, secondly, the brutal treatment of those who are discovered, and last but not least, the never-ending conflict between Waknuk and the Fringes. These evidences contributes to the constant uneasiness of the people in Labrador.
Throughout more than half of the novel, the thought group is under a constant pressure and threat of being discovered by the community of Waknuk and this had created an evident proof for the society's sinister views. Even though the group of eight children physically appear to be a norm, they have special telepathic powers which makes them deviants. Therefore, they believe they should not ever be revealed to the community of Waknuk because it depended on their lives. David Strorm had said: “ Still our whole consideration if we were to survive must be to keep our true selves hidden: to walk, talk, and live indistinguishably from other people” (Wyndham 86). This quote from David, the protagonist of the story, further explains his views about how they should behave to survive. The author uses the first person's view of David to explain the seriousness of their situation and the danger of Waknuk. This constancy of fear and worry from the thought group supports the idea of judgment, discrimination, and alienation demonstrated in the novel. However, the brutal treatment of those who are discovered extends their fears and it further exemplifies discrimination.

When the treatment of deviants are revealed, not only does the novel's plot greatly intensifies, it also allows the readers to fully understand...
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