The environment in “Harrison Bergeron” has a major influence on George’s character. The narrative is set in a dystopian future where the government has achieved total equality by restraining those who are more intelligent or physically capable than the average. George, who is exceptionally intelligent and athletic, is forced to wear a mental handicap radio in his ear that disrupts his thoughts and a physical handicap that makes movement difficult. These handicaps are meant to make sure that no one has an unfair advantage. Nevertheless, for George, these handicaps have a deep effect on his sense of self. He is constantly trying to stay focused and has to stop himself from thinking too deeply or too creatively. He knows that he is capable of much more than what he is allowed to do under the current system, which causes him to feel frustrated and sad.The setting also emphasizes the risks of a society that values absolute equality over individuality. The government’s fixation on equalizing everyone leads to a lack of diversity and a suppression of creativity. George’s struggles demonstrate how essential it is to have the freedom to express oneself and to accept one’s individuality. The setting also brings up questions about the role of government in guaranteeing fairness and equality. Is it right for the government to limit individual freedoms in the name of equality? These are important questions that the story raises and that are still applicable today.
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