In “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” Ursula K. LeGuin depicts a city that is considered to be a utopia. In this “utopia” happiness revolves around the dehumanization of a young child. The people of Omelas understand their source of happiness, but continue to live on. Oppression is ultimately the exercise of authority or power in a cruel or unjust way. LeGuin demonstrates the oppression that the child of Omelas holds in her story. LeGuin articulates the damaging effects that oppression can cause. In addition to LeGuin’s renditions, Chris Davis, a Los Angeles writer, further analyzes the life and conditions that oppressed garment workers face today. Also, Angelo Young, an international journalist from the “International Business Times”, explains the clear undermining that factory workers overseas receive and how they attempt to retaliate. The power that oppression holds has become destructive because the oppressors have become scared of losing their long held happiness and see that the oppressed never fight against that power.
In the short story, LeGuin shows how happiness has consumed those who reside in Omelas. The individuals in Omelas attempt to forget who they oppress in order to maintain their perfect environment. The child of Omelas is stripped of its rights as a human and forced to live in gruesome conditions. “The floor is dirt, a little damp to the touch, as cellar dirt usually is. The room is about three paces long and two wide: a mere broom closet or disused tool room” (LeGuin 4) This child is pushed away from society. The people of Omelas unders...
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...or factory workers wouldn 't destroy anything more than the ego of the oppressors.
Within the story, LeGuin emphasizes passages that support the idea of oppression. The passages show how blinding happiness can be to the people of Omelas. Passages even show the extent that most of the residents are willing to go in order to maintain their “Utopia”. The residents go as far as sacrificing the life and happiness of a single child for their own. The recurrent theme connects to the the real world issue of forced labor. Davis and Young, both writers for online news sources, shine a light on the conditions and retaliation that most workers face and participate in. LeGuin’s hidden message and the work of Davis and Young both point in the same direction. The people of Omelas can not imagine a life without the child 's suffrage nor can big business live without their workers.
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