What handicaps does Harrison wear?

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mickey2bailey's profile pic

mickey2bailey | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

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Harrison is weighted down by many handicaps:Instead of wearing the normal earpiece for a mental handicap, he wore a tremendous pair of earphones.  He also wore glasses that were thick and wavy and intended to make him half blind and give him a massive headache.  There was also scrap metal draping off him and weighing 300 pounds in its load.  In his appearance, besides the ones mentioned in the above two answers, they kept his eyebrows shaved off.

Source:  The Language of Literature Book by McDougal Littell

jamie-wheeler's profile pic

Jamie Wheeler | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

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Harrison Bergeron, the protagonist of the story, has exceptional intelligence, height, strength and beauty, and as a result he has to bear enormous handicaps. These include distracting noises, three hundred pounds of excess weight, eyeglasses to give him headaches and cosmetic changes to make him ugly.

Despite these societal handicaps, he is able to invade a TV station and declare himself emperor. As he strips himself of his handicaps, then dances with a ballerina whose handicaps he has also discarded, both are shot dead by the Handicapper General. The story is framed by an additional perspective from Bergeron's parents, who are watching TV but cannot concentrate enough to remember the incident.

For more information on the novel, characters, and themes, please visit the eNotes link below.


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