Lack of Freedom
Lack of freedom is a common theme found in
This is often due to the strict totalitarian government
- Conformity and superstition
- Belief and Religion
In The Chrysalids, everyone in Waknuk lives in the same way, with the same beliefs, the same mindsets, upholding the same values and even wearing similar clothing(with the cross stitched on in visible sight)
John Wyndham, through the Waknuk society, where conformity is at an extreme level, is able to show us that conformity leads to very little and almost no diversity, variation or individuality
Just like in 1984, where those who think or act differently are caught and vaporized by the thought police
- Humans have the tendency to discriminate against those they see as different from themselves, especially in appearance and thought
- In Waknuk, the people believe in the 'true image of man', from 'The Repentances'
- People who differ from the image are classified as 'deviations' and 'mutants', who are either killed or driven out into the Fringes
Base impurity and evil off of appearance
By emphasizing Discrimination, the readers get to see the consequences and effects of discrimination on a larger, more serious and intense scale
- The people and children discriminated against are sterilized and thrown out into the Fringes
- Their future and lives are destroyed as soon as they begin
- John Wyndham effectively highlights that judgment and discrimination lead to hurt, pain and misery upon those discriminated against
"So I learnt quite early to know what Offences were.
it must be utterly beyond hope, barred to any kind of life for ever and ever." (page 179)
The dystopian genre consists of many novels with more advanced and technologically developed settings and time, like 1984.
The idea of a futuristic place is commonly linked to the image of a highly technologically advanced and industrialized setting and society.
The Chrysalids is unique in this way as it explores the idea of the future 'resulting in the past'
Instead The Chrysalids being set in a technologically advanced society, John Wyndham creates a unique and different dystopia setting which makes us question the present acts and their consequences upon the future.
"There's one tribe where both the men and women hairless, and they think that hair is the devils mark; and there's another where they all have white hair and pink eyes.