Essay #1 - 1 Michael Guertin Writing 140 Maggie Flynn...

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1 Michael Guertin Writing 140 Maggie Flynn September 18, 2007 Assignment #1 Totalitarianism: An Oppressive Perspective Imagine roaming the bleak city streets and glancing at the clock tower to see that it is 11:55 p.m., only five minutes shy of curfew, where a violation of this law by any person will produce serious consequences. Welcome to the life of Evey Hammond, whose every move is monitored by a totalitarian regime called the Norsefire. In the 2006 film, V for Vendetta , directed by James McTeigue, it depicts a futuristic tale of revolution in England. V, the main character, embarks on his own personal vendetta, where he poses as a mysterious, masked avenger who intends to blow up Parliament because its totalitarian system secretly tortured him and molded him into a monster. The social and political construct of a totalitarian government provides the basis for the entire film, where everything is viewed through a maliciously controlling political lens. The government’s policies dictate the framework of the society and impress upon its people the cultural values and social standards of living they are expected to follow at all times. A totalitarian system imposes on its citizens a belief system that the political leaders are all-powerful, and all trust should be placed into them. Its oppressive nature breeds feelings of revolt amongst the majority, who inwardly do not believe in the system and seek political and social change. Although this system establishes a sense of unity and structure, McTeigue subverts totalitarianism by revealing the brutal injustices that serve as the driving forces behind this political regime. A totalitarian regime has several advantages that allow its citizens to benefit from its political and social arrangement. It establishes a sense of structure and organization through its
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2 power to regulate nearly every aspect of public and private behavior. On the surface, all of the citizens seem pleased with the system because of the framework and consistency the government provides. However, the government achieves such a framework through corrupted methods, including a fraudulent bioterrorist attack. Despite the corruption, one advantage of a totalitarian government is the high level of safety and protection. In the beginning of the movie, “The Finger,” the secret police unit, captures Evey at midnight, and they call in reinforcements to handle the situation in a more appropriate manner. This reflects the heightened sense of security that exists within this system, where every individual can be monitored at all times. In fact, the streets and buildings all have video surveillance systems and fingerprint access, showing the high levels of security that guide the society.
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