Jose Saramago's Blindness Essay

Jose Saramago's Blindness Essay

Length: 1541 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

     When defining the word blindness, it can be interpreted in various ways. Either it can be explained as sightless, or it can be carefully deciphered as having a more complex in-depth analysis. In the novel Blindness, Jose Saramago depicts and demonstrates how in an instant your right to see can be taken in an instant. However, in this novel, blindness is metaphorically related to ‘seeing’ the truth beyond our own bias opinions.
Saramago’s novel clearly illustrates themes that describe the importance of the awareness of others, in terms of feeling oppressed by fear, lack of trust, dehumanization, and segregation. He describes in full detail the importance of the government’s involvement in the lives of the blind victims, which allows the reader to understand and recognize our own societal misfortunes in health care, as well as other world problems. For example, our government allows Hispanic women to be eligible for “Medicaid or state-sponsored child health insurance programs, yet many Hispanic American families fear that enrolling family members in such plans could be used against them when they apply for citizenship” (Minority Women’s Health). Not only are Hispanic Americans afraid of getting ill while without health care, but they also fear that having health insurance could devastate their chances of acquiring a citizenship. Moreover, the government is obviously not seeing the pain and suffering through the eyes of the less fortunate, and in turn robs them of their freedom and vulnerability for being in a lower class.  
    
In Saramago’s novel, the government’s commands, instant decisions, and fears about the blind epidemic is what the blind infected, vulnerable characters are terrified about the most. “Look here, blind man, let me tell you something, either the two of you get back to where you came from, or you’ll be shot […] they’re terrified and are only obeying orders” (63). With a large number of people going blind quickly and with no apparent cause, public health officials’ panic and the blind internees are not only afraid for their lives in terms of their sickness, but they are also terrified of the government’s command to shoot and kill the infected internees. The most important things in life is not power and the ability to instill fear on others, it is compassion, love, and understanding. Without these three qualities, we become blind t...


... middle of paper ...


...and can be set aside, has an absurd psychological way of thinking. People should not devalue others’ because they are “weaker,” or “different” from him/her.

“Fear can cause blindness, said the girl with the dark glasses, Never a truer word, that could not be truer, we were already blind the moment we turned blind, fear struck us blind, fear will keep us blind” (Saramago 129). In today’s society, people are more concerned with their own “little world,” rather than looking at the extensive perspective of life. One reason why people can sometimes be classified as being “blind” is because people fear the unknown, and rejects the unfamiliar. Many people are not comfortable with stepping out of their shell and exploring their surroundings, let alone trying to look through the eyes of the segregated minority. In the novel Blindness, Jose Saramago metaphorically uses the word “blindness” as a term meaning, the truth that we cannot bear to see. To avoid the outside world, many people tend to shelter themselves from the obvious reality, and tend to focus of their “own” meaning of reality. However, when our vision is stripped from our secluded selves, reality is all you can truly “see.”

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Blindness, By Jose Saramago Essay

- Blindness When a society goes blind, things begin to change. Things become harder to do with the lack of vision. People 's behaviors change when they are filled with darkness, when they can 't do anything for themselves, and when violence erupts. They start to forget who they are and lose their humanity. They are no longer human, but animals. In "Blindness," Jose Saramago demonstrates how his characters that lack vision act like animals by being brutal, disheveled, and absurd. Instead of coming together and help each other, his characters are hostile and vile towards each other....   [tags: Blindness, Cataract, Braille, The Blind]

Powerful Essays
1051 words (3 pages)

The Road by Cormac McCarthy and Blindness by Jose Saramago Essay

- In all cultures, there are people struggling for survival. Some are starving, some are living in sheer poverty, some are thrown into slavery and some just cannot get their footing; but in all of these situations there seems to be a common theme that presents itself over and over again. Many of these people become so desperate to live they will give up their morals and give in to whatever they can to get by. Occasionally, there is one person stronger than the rest, one able to hold onto their morals, one that would rather die than give in to immorality....   [tags: human brutality, human condition]

Powerful Essays
3300 words (9.4 pages)

Molding of Society in Saramago's Blindness Essay

- To an extent, fear can be used as a way to mold society. The fear of terrorism set out by the event of 9/11 made it a more fear-driven world with growing minds of over analytical, blind, ignorant and assumable citizens, finger-pointing at others. But Jose Saramago's Blindness shows the possibility of fear molding our society. An epidemic of a bright, white blindness affecting all people, such brightness that no one would see anything but the white brightness itself, the novel uses this metaphorically as that we choose to ignore so much of the misery that goes on around us, the awful things that are happening in front of us, the despicable aspects of life....   [tags: Jose Saramago]

Powerful Essays
753 words (2.2 pages)

Philosophical Blindness: A Hypothetical Understanding of Ethics Essay

- Philosophical Blindness: A Hypothetical Understanding of Ethics In Jose Saramago’s novel Blindness (1997), the readers are introduced to a bizarre world where the entire population has been affected by a blindness epidemic. Strange enough, a main character, the doctor’s wife, is presented into the plot as the only immune person to the blindness. Every reader somehow absorbs the struggles each characters exposes throughout the novel and ponders how life would be in such circumstances. The struggles the characters depict as they bare through the epidemic lead the readers towards philosophical questioning in order to reason how such tragedy would be possible....   [tags: José Saramago's novel]

Powerful Essays
1286 words (3.7 pages)

Blindness By Saramago The Doctors Essays

- In blindness by Saramago the doctors wife took the role of the leader. As the doctors wife takes on the role of the leader she is often questioned by her husband. When the eye doctor feels the willpower to have a say he decides it is his duty to alleviate the situation. “The doctor asked his wife, Guide me to the main door, Why, I 'm going to tell them that there is someone here with a serious infection and that we have no medicines,” Saramago, (page 25). The doctor felt as if it was his duty to find a solution to the wounded man problems....   [tags: United States, U.S. state, The Fragile, State]

Powerful Essays
1081 words (3.1 pages)

Essay on The novel Blindness

- The novel Blindness The sinners dealt with in our past novels and the present novel Blindness empathetically been assigned the trait of ignorance. Thus, providing the root of sin and degration of lives, as relating to the treatment of people in the short story Somni in the novel Cloud Atlas. Focusing on Blindness, the ungreedy are horribly dealt with by the thugs with a "conscience with teeth to bite" (18)....   [tags: blindness life of pi analysis literature]

Powerful Essays
1003 words (2.9 pages)

What is Change Blindness? Essay

- As humans with complex categorical tendencies and visual-attentional systems, we assume that our visual representations of the world around us are accurate. Previous research provides an explanation of how what we see is a watered-down version of the world around us, and specifically, how the phenomenon of change blindness assists that. Change blindness describes the experience of not noticing objects that are in our visual field, particularly due to an allocation of attention on the part of the individual....   [tags: not noticing objects, blindness ]

Powerful Essays
2072 words (5.9 pages)

Blindness : A Painful, But Beneficial Flaw Essay

- Blindness: A Painful, But Beneficial Flaw The statement “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” seems like a ludicrous cliché that everyone says too often. Usually when people go through terrible times in their lives all they can see is the negative effect. The journey sucks and usually no one commends it for the newfound strength gained from it. It’s like walking through a rose garden. During the walk, all you can feel are the pricks of the rose thorns impaling themselves in your skin. The experience is horrible and quite excruciating....   [tags: Love, King Lear, William Shakespeare, Blindness]

Powerful Essays
1971 words (5.6 pages)

Power of Discrimination Exposed in Call It Blindness Essay

- Power of Discrimination Exposed in Call It Blindness   The fear of the unknown causes people to inflict pain and hatred rather than try to understand.  They discriminate or prejudge others on the basis of their ethnicity, race, sex or handicap.  This treatment often results in victims being ostracized from society.  It is assumed that such hardship can make people bitter and full of resentment.  However, Georgina Kleege disproves this in her essay "Call It Blindness."  She shows that her personal struggle against discrimination has made her better, because it pushes her to open people's narrow-minded views, break down societal stereotypes, and inspire those with similar challenges...   [tags: Call It Blindness Essays]

Powerful Essays
897 words (2.6 pages)

José Saramago Essay

- José Saramago was born into a family who lived in Azinhaga, a small village in the province of Ribatejo; located one-hundred kilometers north of Lisbon, Portugal. Saramago was born on November 16, 1922, but all of his paper showed the birth took place two days later on November 18, 1922. Born to landless peasants, Saramago was forced to move several times though out his lifetime. At age two, Saramago and his family moved to Lisbon, where his dad could get a job as a policeman. Shortly after moving to Lisbon, Saramago’s elder brother Francisco died....   [tags: Biography]

Powerful Essays
698 words (2 pages)