What is the action in Harrison Bergeron?

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gkopf | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

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Harrison Bergeron is a short story set in a dystopian future.  In this future, all people are equal. This does not just mean that they have equal rights. No one is prettier than anyone else (beautiful people have to wear masks to hide their beauty), no one is stronger than anyone else (the strong have to carry weights to weaken them), and no one is smarter than anyone else (intelligent people have an ear piece that sets off a disturbing sound to keep them from thinking straight). Most people accept this, but Harrison Bergeron does not.

Harrison was arrested before the story begins. He did not agree with this government's definition of "equal." He breaks out of jail and crashes a ballet performance (the ballerinas wear weights and masks too). His father watches this on TV, surprised to see his son out of jail.

Harrison invites one of the dancers to dance with him in defiance of the government.  The ballet dancer takes off her weights and her mask, and she dances with Harrison.  They are killed by government officials.  Harrison's father watches this happen on TV, but his ear piece sounds off, and he forgets what he just witnessed.

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