Chrysalids Essay, Research Paper
The Chrysalids is a science fictional book of suspense, irony and pathos. The six main characters in the novel are David Strorm, Joseph Strorm, Gordon Strorm, Petra Strorm, Rosalind, and Sealand woman. They have different situations and different opinions in the story which adds more suspense and keeps the reader interested right to the least page.
In this novel the differences between people are not physical but mental as well. The novel’s narrator is a left-handed, brown haired man called David, one of the chrysalids. When he was small, he sometimes dreamed of a city that was different from Waknuk. David has the power to communicate with his mind and it is called thought-shapes. However, he is unable to communicate with everyone by using thought-shapes. He can only communicate with people who have telepathic power. On the other hand, he lives in a world where people think of themselves as normal and the Norms try to destroy those who are abnormal. He makes friends with Sophie, the mutant, when he was ten. He keeps her as a secret but is still afraid that her secret will be revealed one day. Nevertheless, she still goes out to the Fringe because Alan Ervin discovers Sophie has six toes and goes telling David’s father and the inspector. At the end of the story, David, Rosalind and the people who have telepathic powers escape to the Fringe. Finally, the Sealand woman save them from the war between Waknuk and Fringe, and lead them to the new place. When they arrived in Sealand, it just looks like David’s dream. His dream finally comes true when he is eighteen years old.
Joseph Strorm is David’s father and the leading figure in Waknuk. His father, Elias Strorm, is a founder of Waknuk. He dislikes his father and does not want to repeat his father’s mistake, so he marries Emily Morton after his father’s death. In his situation, he tried to destroy those who are abnormal because he thinks that the mutant will bring the evil to everyone and suggested that the mutant must be sent to the Fringe. On the other hand, he whips his son David when he finds out David is keeping Sophie’s mutation a secret. It shows that he is a cruel and heartless man. In the story, he shows anti-intellectualism because he wants to keep his power in Waknuk. In addition, he helps us to find out what a human rights is when we compare David and Joseph’s situation and we know the real idea of this novel.
Gordon Strorm is Joseph’s older brother and the leader of the Fringe community. Everyone calls him Spiderman because he is 18 inches taller than anyone else and his arms are long and thin. He is normal until he was four when his mutation shows up and he is sent to live in the Fringe. At the end of the story, he tried to keep Rosalind and Petra captive because he wanted Rosalind to give him a normal baby. He is supposed to inherit Waknuk but because he is a mutant, Joseph got it instead. There is a war between Joseph and Gordon at the end of the novel because Joseph wants to invade the Fringe community to catch David. At last, Gordon and his lover Sophie die in the skirmish.
Petra Strorm is the youngest member in Strorm family. She is a happy child and pretty since she was a baby with her close golden curls, so everyone loves her so much. She is the youngest and most powerful chrysalid in the group. Her powers start showing when she is six and comes only when she is terrified. She has the ability to command other group members and block out all the other chrysalids when she communicates. In chapter 11, Petra rides her pony into the woods and is attacked by an animal. She sends out a distress signal and the others are forced to rescue her. Then, Rosalind, Michael, David, and Rachel show up to rescue Petra. This makes the Waknuk people suspicious and the group begins to escape to the Fringe. Petra has the ability to communicate with other chraysalids over a far distance, so she begins to communicate with the Sealand woman who rescues them at the end of the story.
Rosalind is Angus Morton’s (David’s Uncle) daughter. She is tall, slim, confident and has bronze-gold coloured hair. She is in love with David, but because of the feud between Rosalind’s father and David’s father, it is impossible that they can marry each other. Rosalind steals two mutant horses that his father brought and uses them to escape the Norms with David and Petra. On the way, Rosalind kills a man who is following the trail of the great horses and this distresses her. When she arrives to Fringe, she has a conflict between Sophie and David because she thinks David loves Sophie. At last, she was brought to the Sealand with David and Petra by the Sealand woman.
The Sealand woman is the one who rescues David, Petra and Rosalind to Sealand. Her eyes are large, with irises more brown than green. Her nose is straight, mouth is a little wide, chin is rounded, and hair was just a little darker then Rosalind’s. She appears to have the perfect appearance. She uses glistening threads, like cobwebs to kill everyone and everything except the chrysalids in the Fringe community. She is interested in Petra because Petra can project her thoughts farther then anyone else can. She thinks that if she trains her, she will be the most powerful think-shaper there ever was. She wants her to grow up and have babies who will probably be as powerful as she is. She seems to care only about Petra, not the others because she does not even offer to go back and get Michael and Rachel. She is big-minded as she speaks to David and the others in a condescending manner as if they are stupid.
John Wyndham creates many characters in The Chrysalids. Each character has his/her own characteristics and each of them is a unique person. From their interactions and events that happen between them, we know that Nuclear War brings a lot of conflicts to everyone. Wyndham uses Joseph to show the foolishness of trying to stop evolution from happening. Joseph is even willing to kill his children to prevent change. We can know that wars bring painful and misfortune to everyone.