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            V for
Vendetta, published in 1990 by Alan Moore, is a novel set in a post-modern England
run by the fascist Norsefire party. The fascism in the book is similar to Nazi
Germany in World War II, with the dictator, Adam Susan, using all of his power
to oppress everyone in the country, such as installing concentration camps. It
takes for one individual, called V, to try rebel against the government for the
sake of freedom and anarchy; having control over one’s own decisions without a
government telling them otherwise. V commits serious acts of terror against the
fascist government so everyone can live free of an oppressive rule. The novel,
V for Vendetta, suggests that freedom is having full individuality and can only
be achieved when order is abolished.

 

            Chapter
five of the first third of the book introduces the reader to the one of the
main themes of the book, individual freedom. The theme is addressed by two
sides, by both V and the Norsefire party. V talks to the statue of liberty, or
Madam Justice as V calls it, and essentially talks to himself. Within this talk,
V states that he does not believe in liberty, and decides to follow anarchy as
he utters this quote in his talk to the statue of liberty: “She has
taught me that justice is meaningless without freedom. She is honest, she makes
no promises and breaks none.” (Moore, 1990, 41). What this quote is
trying to say is that politicians often make promises in their political
campaigns, often pertaining to giving their citizens more rights, more freedom and
justice. So when they get elected, they forget what they say during their
political campaign and thus no progress for freedom happens. Anarchy means the
lack of a government, which means there is no one to lie and make promises for
the sake of anarchy. On the other hand, when the reader gets formally
introduced to the dictator, Adam Susan, Susan gives a full speech of his goals
and ideals. Susan states many times within this speech that he does not believe
in freedom or liberty, such as in this quote: “The only freedom left to my
people is the freedom to starve, the freedom to die, the freedom to live in a
world of chaos. Should I allow them that freedom? I think not. I think not.” (Moore,
1990, 38). This quote and the speech as a whole directly tells the
reader that Adam Susan does not believe in individual freedom, and provides the
reader a clear conflict between the two ideals.

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            Eric Finch
is a recurring character within the novel, being a police officer for the
Norsefire government who often investigates terrorist acts V has committed
throughout the book. In the last third of the book, Finch drives off to a
concentration camp and decides to intake LSD. After taking in the drug, he starts
hallucinating and then realizes how much he doesn’t like his job, and starts questioning
his life. “We treated you so badly, all the hateful things he printed, did, and
said…but please. Please don’t despise us” (Moore, 1990, 213). Finch
starts hallucinating about the friends he had, and he realizes how badly the
Norsefire party and the police treated them just cause of their sexuality and
takes the blame for it. Finch starts questioning even more, and says: “Who
imprisoned me here? Who keeps me here? Who can release me? Who’s controlling and
constraining my life, except…me? I…I’m free. FREEEEEE!” (Moore, 1990, 215). This
is when Finch starts to abandon the police force after realizing how badly they
treat the people in the country and now only works for himself, free to do
whatever he wants. This moment signifies the freedom found when there is no law
to constrict an individual’s actions.

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