Individual Vs. Society

The theme of individuals vs. society is well presented in course. It is very crucial that one masters this concept by having a strong grasp of the different texts. In each book, there are characters who demonstrate this theme by putting other characters or one particular character before themselves and that shows how selfless they are. One can learn from the course units that sense of community is very important; it is hard to put others before oneself but indeed worth it and makes one feel better about himself/herself.

This is a picture of scientists working in a lab. This picture is related to the book Cat's Cradle and the course theme of self vs. others. In the book, Dr.Breed says, "Pure researchers men work on what interests them, not what interests others"(pg 49). This shows that he is extrapolating that what these scientists and researchers do is just for themselves and that don't put others before themselves. Might be selfish?
This is the death scene of Socrates. Socrates was a leader who gave his all to the community but they didn't give him anything in return, instead he was sentenced to death. Likewise, Angela says, “He gave so much, and they gave him so little. (page 177). She refers to the fact that her father did a lot for the community but the society didn't give him anything in return or even did anything for Dr. Felix's kids.
This is an image of the Tower of Babel which was build to keep the people together but the God caused the confusion (pg 238) within people (confusion in language) and scattered the people of the city all over the face of the earth. Was God scared of people's unity? This shows that it was the care of others that kept them together and clearly ties with theme in a way that the unity of people (selflessness) can be so strong that even God (fictitious) got scared.
Caius Mucius is a well-known hero of 17th century and is known for his bad-ass bravery just like Raven who devoted his life to helping people. Neil says that "Until a man is twenty-five, he still thinks, every so often, that under the right circumstances he could be the baddest motherfucker in the world...Hiro used to feel that way, too, but then he ran into Raven...He no longer has to worry about trying to be the baddest motherfucker in the world" (pg 177). He even tells Y.T that when they move to California, he will still be on a mission of helping people (page 247), which shows his great care towards the community (Aleuts).
Neil Stephenson in his writings Snow Crash fears that the computer virus and technology (internet?)will take over the the human culture and we then no longer will remain humans but tech. puppets of what is now "humanity". Neil's care for the human culture (human society) is clearly shown but doesn't advancement in world (technological) can benefit human culture?
This is an image of Gilgamesh's sword. Gilgamesh was an epic hero and one of the oldest characters in the history of literature; he served the community ever since he became an adult.He was brave and energetic. Likewise, Raphael in Utopia helped his fellows in the community while he was young, "I distributed that among my kindred and friends which other people do ;not part with till they are old and sick" (pg15). It clearly shows that whatever he did was out of his own willingness and he always truly cared about the society.
People in this picture seems to have unity which portrays an ideal society. Thomas Moore in Utopia writes about a perfect society where the money (or wealth) is of no importance (or at least less important than humans). Moore is certainly worried about the society and he is trying to make (suggesting) a perfect societal moves which can be seen through out this work, but without the importance of money, should a society like ours (current society) would have achieved that much?
This is a statue of Cain killing Abel because Cain did not have any sense of community. Likewise, in Red Harvest, the city of Personaville is wild and full of people who are all about themselves and they do not care about saving other members of the society. The guy who killed Mr. Willsson said that if his (Donald's) wife had came in between, he wouldn't have shot Mr.Willsson but she didn't and she let him die(page 24). Therefore, it is essential to be selfless in order to survive in the society.
This is an image that demonstrates suspense and it is related to Red Harvest in a way that every moment in the book is a suspense since there are so many killings going on and it is hard to tell who is killing who which is a shame because that shows how destroyed the community is. No one cares about other beings in the society which relates to the overall theme of self vs. others because if everyone in the city cared more about the people around them and tried to protect their fellows, the rate of violence wouldn't go that high.
Credits: All media
This user gallery has been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
Translate with Google