Literary Analysis: Divergent, Veronica Roth

;P Gonna get hate for no reason

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4. The Factions

So the three main factions that are explored in Divergent are Dauntless (the most explored) as well as Abnegation and Erudite. I'll examine these separately, but before I do - of all the dystopians I've read/seen, Divergent is the one I feel is least likely to happen [and I've watched Terminator. Repeatedly]. It describes a system that just wouldn't even be constructed let alone work, in my opinion. I've also explained previously, that the different factions resemble the Hogwarts Houses to an extent.


~ The Dauntless ~
So the main faction focused on in the story is Dauntless. And, to the sickness of my stomach, it's the one that everyone wants to be in [from what I can see]. To anyone who isn't a fan or hasn't read the story, Dauntless is one of the five factions that is supposed to stand for courage, and actively works as Chicago's [?] police system and military.

Firstly, I don't understand why it's ritualistic to jump off trains and buildings to prove that you're fierce.
Ever heard the words “there's a thin line between courage and stupidity”?
Dauntless are on the stupid side of that line.
The point is to serve your single surviving city by protecting it. Correct me if I'm wrong, but that includes staying alive yourself.
Okay, so maybe once when you're starting initiation, or as a show of bravado, or when you need to - but all the damn time? Jumping off a moving train for the sake of jumping off a moving train? Why! How many times would actually have to do that for a good reason?
And, ironically, the initiate training lasts like -what? - a few months?

And cutting the remaining initiates, save the top ten, to live as hobos? An army actually throwing away fresh recruits? Really? REALLY?
REEEEAAAALLLLY?
Do I even need to elaborate on that point?

The multiple piercings and the hair colours mustn't have been well thought-out. Imagine you're a Dauntless guard who knows your going to get a few licks to the face every so often, okay? Would you honestly consider piercing your brow or your nose? Getting punched is painful enough, why would you want to amplify that agony? And, forget punching - humans have three obvious weaknesses [don't tell anyone that I'm telling you this] eyes, throat and groin [yes, even girls].
Well, tough news everyone, we can overthrow Dauntless if we walk up to them and tear all their facial piercings out!
Military also often involves blending in, not sticking out. That said, why the hell would you dye your hair a fluorescent colour that could be seen five miles away in a forest of closely-knit trees even at night?

Lastly, I don't understand why a militarised district (because that's what Dauntless is supposed to be) is so free. I will say this because I believe it - the only thing that people in general have done correctly according to the course of history is killing and oppressing other people. This has been done in turn by extremely regimented, structured and ordered armies. Throughout history. Think about it. The top dogs. The winners.
Spartans. Romans. Persians. Crusaders. Saracens. Ottomans. Mongolians. The Redcoats [people were scared of guys in bright red coats, powdered wigs and white stockings. Come on. You don't even need to look the part].
And what do they all have in common?
Unity, uniformity, discipline.
Why? Because it works.
In the reality of things, Dauntless should be the strait-jacket, stiff district. Abnegation has more external similarities to a militarised district than any of the others -  the same haircuts, the same clothes, regarding everyone as an equal.

Which leads me to my next faction.

~The Abnegation~
The selfless. People borne of the idea that peace was prevented by greed. It's been mentioned in the book a few times itself, so I probably don't need to say this - being selfless is an essential part of being brave.
That in mind, Abnegation and Dauntless ought to be the same faction - while carrying the Abnegation exterior affects and carrying the interior and exterior training of the Dauntless.
The military would be working in a military way, if that makes sense - instead of being a pack of rowdy kids with a death wish.

But that would probably mean that Abnegation wouldn't be able to rule.
Not that it makes sense in it's current state anyway.
The backstory isn't really provided, but since when is rulership given to people who don't really want it [because they actually understand it]? When is leadership given to the selfless? Who decided that? Democracy? Doubt it.
History doesn't change, it repeats.
I'm not saying never, but I highly doubt there will ever come a time where people like the Erudite, the Dauntless and even the Candor would concede power to selfless people who know what to do with it. That's three very powerful factions against one.

But anyway, the inaccuracies aside, Abnegation is my favourite faction. Tris escapes from them because of the [highly inaccurate] freedom that the Dauntless presents her - but the Abnegation strike me as the best faction. I don't know. I'd probably be in Candor or Erudite [haha, leave comments below] but I'd choose Abnegation at the Choosing Ceremony on pain of becoming factionless any day.

~The Erudite~
No real criticism there. They're the scientists and educators, I guess. People who think ignorance is the reason for war.
They were exactly as I expected. The colour blue, the plot for rebellion, all of that clicked. Except, I doubt they agree on things amongst each other much...

 

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