Symbolism In Harrison Bergeron

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Pages: 3

The short story, Harrison Bergeron, tells a society that forces everyone to be equal in status instead of treating everyone with an equal respect. Harrison Bergeron is the main character who is athletic, intelligent and handsome, so he must wear handicaps such as weight, mask, and radio in order to keep him from taking unfair advantages. In the story, Harrison sheds his handicap and dances with a ballerina who also takes off her mask and weights. The touching dance symbolizes individuality and defiance. By taking off the handicaps, the ballerina and Harrison "leaped like deer on the moon", because they have no restriction that affects their talents. When they passionately dance and kiss together on the stage, they reveal that people act better with their emotions and personal characteristics. Therefore, their performance revolts the government that everyone has the rights to be himself …show more content…
One of the most expressive symbols is the old black box, which means the death, tradition, and fear. Even though "the black box grew shabbier each year", nobody wants to change a new box because the black box represents the tradition and the first people settled down to make the village. Black is well known as a color of dark and evil, so using black for the box perfectly reflects the theme of death and foreshadows the future death of an innocent person. As the Old Man Warner says "Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon", everyone thinks that they should keep doing the lottery every year, which is ridiculous for the readers. Thus, the use of the symbolism of the black box highlights the reluctance of people to reject the unreasonable and deep-rooted tradition. The symbolism demonstrates the message that it is difficult for people who adapt to the given circumstance to see the tradition that damages the