Breaking Down Dystopia: Ender’s Game – Part 1

Dear Jerry,

The next three Tuesdays, I (along with the rest of my One Room colleagues) will be writing about various dystopian worlds. Dystopia. That is a word you do not hear everyday. Dystopian worlds are worlds that are regulated tightly by the government in order to produce a “perfect” society that is as free from trouble and pain as possible. The problem with these worlds is that the sin contained in human nature always causes them to break down eventually. My world that I am studying, is the world of Ender’s Game. I have to say that Enders Game is one of my favorite dystopian books. I finished reading it in about five hours. This fine piece of fiction chronicles the life of a brilliant young boy, Ender Wiggin. Ender is a third child in a word where two children is the norm and third or fourth children are despised by others outside the family. He is mocked and ostracized by his schoolmates and they try to beat him up just after he leaves school. They picked this day to attack him because he had just had his Monitor removed. The Monitor is a device that hears and sees everything that it’s wearer hears, so these bullies would have been in trouble if they had bothered him before. Even though Ender is only six, he realizes that he has to end this fight and end all other future fights in one swift stroke, so, he beats his antagonist senseless. The authority’s notice his ruthlessness and decide to recruit him to the Battle School to be trained to be a fleet commander. (All of the kids in Battle School are between 6-12) Many other children that show similar potential are recruited to fight against the relentless and powerful alien enemy, the Buggers. The commanders and staff of Battle School see his potential as an excellent and potentially world-saving commander and start training him relentlessly. It is a very rough life. Ender’s life at Battle School is exhausting and violent. As the smartest kid there, he is the natural target for the older and stronger kids. Life follows a difficult, but set pattern that is fairly predictable until he realizes the value that the school, and really the whole world, places on his own well being. He begins to be hustled through training with unusual speed. I do not want to spoil anything, so I will be careful not to ruin the plot for those of you that have not read the book yet. Next week we will be writing in depth about the breakdown of our chosen dystopian worlds.

P.S. Ender’s Game has several scenes of fairly graphic violence. There are also several crude jokes made throughout the book. I would not recommend this book to anybody younger then fourteen. Anybody younger then that would have to have their parents approve it before they read it.




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