Moreover, there was no bell to ring anywhere”

Moreover, the characters Equality 7-252 demonstrates the effect of the collectivist thought on his mind. He is seen reflecting to himself “But here, in our tunnel, we feel it no longer. The air is pure under the ground. There is no odor of men. And these three hours give us strength for our hours above the ground (Rand, 44). Through this observation, Rand is showing the readers the freedom that individuals living in collectivist societies are desperate for.This tunnel is where he is able to be free and his use of words such as ‘the air is pure’ is essential in understanding his feelings. This tunnel would be associated with the feeling of a lonely, dark place but the fact that it is a place of happiness and light for him is essential in proving the theme of collectivism. This is where he is able to be free and his relief is clearly expressed here. Additionally, in his first day of freedom he states “We awoke when a ray of sunlight fell across our face. We wanted to leap to our feet, as we have had to leap every morning of our life, but we remembered suddenly that no bell had rung and that there was no bell to ring anywhere” (Rand, 82). In this quotation, the ‘bell’ is the societal permission which he no longer has to confine to and it is clear that the sunshine is there symbolizing his happiness and sense of purpose being back. An example in history is seen through the perspectives of Chinese culture, specifically their uniform societal expectations. The Great Leap Forward was a five year plan which transitioned economic policies into a collectivist approach. There was much controversy on the introduction of this plan, due to socialist policies dictating the lives of citizens. This resulted in all power being taken away from individuals, leading to thousands of deaths as well from starvation, overproduction and lack of sleep amongst the workforce. This historical event symbolizes the changes in society and its effects on Chinese people which is representative to the feelings of suppression expressed through Equality in the novel. 

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