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V for Vendetta Themes & Ideas

by Group 3.

Tony Faria

on 20 February 2013

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Transcript of V for Vendetta Themes & Ideas

for Vendetta Culture and the Human Experience This is a dark age for Britain following a nuclear war. Concentration camps are run by a fascist party called Norsefire as a means of gaining power within the country. They rule the country in a police state and make efforts to destroy remnants of human culture. V compares this cultural oppression to slavery. An analysis of themes and ideas "They have eradicated culture… tossed it like a fistful of dead roses… No Tamla and no Trojan. No Billie Holiday or Black Uhuru, just his master’s voice. Every hour, on the hour, ” - V

(VOL 01, Page 12, the Shadow Gallery). The belief that the arts are innately human and that they separate us from the un-evolved is prominent in V for Vendetta. Through V, Moore offers a critical stance on the idea of a dystopian government which shuns knowledge in favor of greed and politics. The idea that in order to be the best that we can be, the worst of us, must also be as healthy and as knowledgeable as the next guy. "Knowledge, like air, is vital to life. Like air, no one should be denied it."
- V (V for Vendetta, the film) The movement that V creates and believes in has a clear theme; Vigilantism in V for Vendetta Vigilante [vij-uh-lan-tee]: someone who takes the law into their own hands, often with violence and lacking lawful procedures. On the surface V appears to be the standard vigilante, someone seeking bloody revenge on those who have wronged him. However, delving deeper, V's vigilante justice begins to take further meaning. V's path of vengeance is rooted not from his own pain but the pain of someone else. His vengeance is not born of hatred of those who did wrong, but the love he felt for someone he never met, Valerie. Through V's actions of vigilantism he achieves more than just revenge or justice; he achieves change for the better, and brings hope to people who had lost it.
V is not out to see the world burn for its crimes, instead he grows roses in memory of Valerie in the hopes that, "the world turns and that things get better" (Page 160, Valerie's letter) Parallels in the Modern World Propaganda is an important tool to the Norsefire government. With it they can shape the public opinion of policies, events and people or groups of people. “Britain's belief in the integrity of Fate is the cornerstone of our New Order. Any change in the voice and it just won't be the same." (VOL 01, Chapter 4, Vaudeville).

In order to maintain this “voice” it was important that the ruling government maintain a hold on public opinion. This tactic can be seen in several countries in modern day that censor media and the internet. North Korea, Libya and Cuba are all examples of countries that have control of media like television stations and news stations.

North Korea holds no tolerance for any media reporting critical of their government while countries like China and Egypt censor internet access. Through censorship, one can limit the information available to their people and in turn control to a certain degree public opinion and actions. Censorship is used by the Norsefire government to maintain control over the country’s population. By manipulating media channels, the government can filter information provided to citizens. This will eventually direct their actions and opinions as the population only has access to what the government allows. V as a nationalist The character V, in V for Vendetta, is commonly referred to by officials as a harmful terrorist. A concept that is presented in the story as the moral dilemma of whether or not V’s destructive behavior is harmful or helpful.

This key question can be properly analyzed by viewing V's actions as an outsider to avoid bias on V's behalf.

However, by comparing V's actions to real life catastrophies,we can come to the conclusion that his actions are justified. Parliament House Innocent Civilians Harmed
Executed to send a message
Civilians found interesting/amusing
Media makes jokes about attack day later
Government covers up attack
Goes to war covertly World Trade Center Innocent Civilians Harmed
Executed to send a message
Triggered worldwide panic
Media still in mourning
Government gives public announcement of attack
Goes to war publicly Parliament Building/ Revolution Singular leading, national effort carefully planned violent execution Successful result Fictionally, V’s actions are inspirational, revolutionary and brilliant. In reality however, the actions that V undertook are far more dark, and sinister.

Regardless of how the media dresses these issues up, innocent lives are always the cost, and terror is generated. The only way that these revolutions can be measured, is by the results they generate. We can all be heroes when we act responsibly towards our fellow man. Major Symbols
and the Themes they Represent V for Vendetta is rich with symbols that represent a great many things throughout the novel. Most notable perhaps is the Guy Fox mask.

One of the most important themes that V's mask represents is the concept of identity vs. the ideal. By removing V's face, you remove the person who wears the mask and the character becomes more than just a person - V comes to represent an ideal. This is huge in a story with social unrest because it means that V could be anybody - your brother, neighbor, someone in the government. It allows other characters who had no power or influence the chance to be a part of V and encourages individuals to step forth and to take a stand. V's true identity doesn't matter because he is the idea - and the idea represents everyone. "People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people." - V (V for Vendetta, the film) The letter “V” itself is vital to the story in a few different ways. One thing it represents is anarchy. V’s symbol is distinctive as it is the exact opposite to the symbol for anarchy. Much like how his ideals are the exact opposite of the government. The symbol is often seen defacing property and grows in significance as more people start believing in the cause. We later see other characters also painting the symbol.

The 'V' also comes to represent self realization and control. As characters learn of the power they hold within their own lives they accept V's ideal and show their support by forming a V shape and raising their hands to the sky. V for Vendetta explores the possibilities of a totalitarian world and through the narrative we can come to recognize a great many running themes.

Alan Moore and David Lloyd gave us not only a fictional hero, but beautifully illustrated the idea that V represents and should remain vigilant to us as a species. That we have the right and the power to take control of our lives and should do so.

Anything less would be a crime. Presented by Group 3 V in the Shadow Gallery (from the film adaptation). Thank you for your time. Lindsey Rosenow, Simon Booth, Zoe Swanson, Will Zettel & Tony Faria. Presented by
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