Harrison Bergeron Questions and Answers
by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

Harrison Bergeron book cover
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When Harrison Bergeron takes over and joins together with the ballerina, what does this tell readers about the human spirit?

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The incident when Harrison appears in the television studio after escaping from jail serves as the dramatic climax of the story. He bursts through the door, takes control of the studio, and engages the ballerina and the orchestra in an act of defiance against the government. Absent their horrible and repressive handicaps, Harrison and the girl create a vision of breathtaking grace and beauty as they dance together in a moment of soaring personal freedom. Their rebellion ends quickly as both are murdered and the government takes control again. This incident develops the theme that the human spirit can be shackled and repressed by authoritarian power, but it cannot be stamped out completely. Regardless of the efforts of the government to destroy the individuality of its citizens, Harrison's revolt and his moment of rebellion with the ballerina prove that ultimately the human spirit in its quest for freedom and personal expression is stronger and more enduring than the most repressive government. Many instances in human history support this idea.

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