DIVERGENT BOOK SERIES REVIEW

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. Veronica Roth’s Divergent series is one of the many well-known in this genre, more than likely second just to Suzanne Collins’ “The Hunger Games”. Like Hunger GamesDivergent features a strong female protagonist, Beatrice “Tris” Prior, that tells the story in the initially perchild present. And like Hunger GamesDivergent raises inquiries about societal norms, fascism, and also what an excellent perboy is to do once challenged through an unjust federal government. Like Hunger Games, there are definitely positive messages to take amethod from analysis the series, yet the question is: perform the positives outweigh the violence and also negative messages?

THE OVERALL STORYLINE

Divergent, the first book in the series, introduces the reader to a dystopian Chicearlier which is separated right into 5 factions, each of whom is obsessively fixated on one virtue. Abnegation worths self denial, Candor worths honesty, Dauntless worths braincredibly, Erudite values knowledge, and Amity worths kindness. Generally a perkid has actually an aptitude for one faction, yet a few distinct Divergents have actually aptitudes for multiple factions. At 16, a teenager has actually one choice to decide which factivity to sign up with, and Beatrice “Tris” Prior chooses Dauntmuch less. Divergent adheres to Tris via the initiation process, then stars her and her boyfriend Toprejudice “Four” preventing an effort by the Erudite to seize control of the city.

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Book two, Insurgent, defines Tris’ attempts to number out what is beyond the fence which encloses Chicback. With the help of a couple of unmost likely allies, she reveals surprise Erudite footage around the beginning and mission of the city: to develop a mainly divergent population which deserve to help the exterior world.

The final book, Allegiant, reveals Tris, Four, and also others leaving Chicearlier and also entering the outside civilization. Tbelow, they learn that Chicback is actually an experiment by the Bureau of Genetic Welfare to recognize if living in factions deserve to help return damaged DNA to its original “pure” create. The series concludes through Tris sacrificing her life to wipe the memory of the scientists at the Bureau so that the genetically damaged will be pertained to as equal human beings thenceforth.

Overall, it’s an exciting, fast-paced series with a compelling, charismatic first-perboy narration style. Its popularity is quickly taken. But beneath the swift-moving story line tbelow are a hold of concerns which parental fees might find concerning.

VIOLENCE

Hunger Gamings took the majority of poor press for violence, however honestly I found Divergent much more consistently violent. Teenagers intentionally injury various other adolescents, such as one occasion wright here a sixteen year old sticks a butter knife right into a rival’s eyes. There is an inordinate amount of hazing in the first book, both instructor on student and also student to student. Tright here are massacres, and there are executions which involve shooting the wrongdoer in the head. There is a scene wbelow a team of students attempt to sexually molest and also then murder Tris.

Even even more alarming to me is the amount of violence Tris herself commits willingly. At least in Hunger Games Katniss largely committed violence under duress. Tris chooses Dauntmuch less as her factivity because she craves the peril and also adrenaline rushes, but quickly decides that if it takes hurting others to excel, she’s willing to fight her method to the optimal. She scorns her classmate who refoffers to beat others sensemuch less to boost his ranemperors. In comparison, Tris herself continues kicking a girl who has actually bullied her long after she’s bconsumed, and then says she doesn’t feel guilty at all. Tris likewise repetitively has to shoot her family members in the head to escape her fear landscape, a visual I had actually a tough time shaking.

SEX SCENES

Divergent is simply awful when it involves establishing an instance of a chaste relationship to teenagers. The protagonists, Tris and Four, are forever before ending up making out in bed together, sometimes scantily clothed. Tbelow are no explicit sex scenes, yet many talk around wanting to have actually sex, descriptions of taking off clothing, hands under clothing, and also sleeping together. Tright here is likewise a disturbing template around using each various other and also kissing or sex to forget problems temporarily and avoid addressing connection concerns. Tris is forever saying points favor, “I push my mouth to his, because I recognize that kissing him will certainly distract me from whatever.” Are these messperiods about what is correct in between adolescents and also making use of one one more what we desire to teach our teenagers?

TATTOOS

Having tattoos is reportedly an integral component of the Dauntless identity, which is obviously lauded considering that Tris and Four select it. Paleas should realize that in Divergent, tattoos are normalized as a legitimate method of immortalizing a memory. Tris gets numerous to mark vital occasions and also persons in her life. There is additionally an amazing motif around enjoying the pain affiliated in obtaining a tatalso. For instance, Four defines obtaining his initially tattoo: “It was agonizing. I relimelted eexceptionally second of it.”

DRUGS

The drugs in Divergent are a collection of serums which attain various results: memory erasing serums, tranquility serums, death serums, fear-inducing serums, and also so on. The means these drugs are provided is mostly by injection, and some characters usage them in means alarmingly equivalent to real life drug use. The Dauntmuch less usage a fear-inducing serum to reason a hallucination of one’s worst fears: a are afraid landscape. Four obsessively injects himself and goes via his fear landscape, and also even injects Tris so she can “journey” via him. The Amity inject a tranquility inducing serum to send troublemakers right into hippy happiness aacquire. The Amity likewise bake this tranquility drug right into their bread so that their whole community “feels peaceful” constantly. I uncover all this drug usage normalization concerning in a novel aimed at teenagers.

HOMOSEXUALITY

Anvarious other normalizing attempt in the series is a couple of totally unvital plugs for homosex-related relationships. One of Tris and also Four’s friends, Lynn, confesses on her death bed to “really loving” her frifinish Marlene. Another minor character, a grvery own male named Amar, confesses to having had a crush on Four as soon as he was a minor. However before, he is explained as being over that and also now being in a relationship through an additional minor character, George. There are repeated descriptions of Amar and George hugging and sharing affection.

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LIAR, LIAR…

Another very disquieting layout in Divergent is that lying is not a large deal. From the start, Tris declare she might never belengthy in Candor bereason she lies easily and often. She does not seem to see this as a negative at all. She explains herself at one point: “I don’t know once I came to be so excellent at acting, yet I guess it’s not that various from lying which I have constantly had actually a talent for.” Tris additionally lies to Four repetitively, also premeditated lies. For example, in an emotional scene in Insurgent Four begs her not to sacrifice her life by going to Erudite headquarters. She knows she is going to go anyway, yet looks him in the eyes and guarantees not to go, then thinks: “This lie- this lie is the worst I have ever before told. I will not have the ability to take it ago.” Furthermore, many of Tris and also Four’s plans are contingent on lying convincingly. Tris deserve to also withstand the “fact serum” and also gets herself out of trouble multiple times by lying while under its affect.

ENDS JUSTIFYING MEANS

The factor Tris and Four lie commonly is that they believe the ends justifies the means. Divergent offers lip business to the idea that ends perform not justify means insomuch as Tris claims that it is wrong to sacrifice the resides of people for the function of genetic cleansing. But in practice, Tris and also Four often lie and even kill to attain their objectives. Four defines at one allude in Allegiant that for his father, his mommy, and also sometimes himself, “the finish of a thing justifies the suggests of obtaining tright here.” For Tris, it doesn’t even have to be a noble implies. She will lie to conserve herself embarrassment or inconvenience.

RELIGION

Unlike Hunger Gamings, wbelow God and faith are absolutely ignored, Divergent flirts through the principle of God and religious beliefs having actually some meaning, at leastern for some human being. Praying and also talking about God and also heaven is somepoint only the Abnegation carry out in Divergent. I take into consideration this relegation of God and prayer to being a idea specific to a particular Faction a very subtle means of dislacking faith.

Tris herself has bit to say on the topic of religious beliefs. She is basically an agnostic, dealing with all points spiritual via ambivalence. She is mostly uncertain about the presence of any immortality. But as soon as faced via brewing death in Insurgent, she states that she does not believe that anything she does or doesn’t carry out will certainly make an affect on her eternal future, if there is one. “I don’t think that what comes after relies on anypoint I do at all.”

PHILOSOPHY OF VIRTUE

At initially, I was excited that Divergent was increasing concerns around what it implies to have various virtues. But by the end of the series, I realized that the conclusions Roth leaves the reader with regarding specific virtues and also exactly how virtues relate to one another are quite problematic.

I think one standard problem in Divergent is a absence of understanding of what a virtue actually is. In the Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle defines virtue as a disposition to act rightly, and also as a intend in between the 2 vices of excess and also deficiency. This simple yet effective definition is what Roth was plainly lacking when she composed the Divergent series. She regularly describes an excess as the virtue. For instance, the Abnegation are intended to be selfmuch less, which Roth defines at times as a finish unwillingness to ever accept help. Unwillingness to accept aid is a type of pride, not a virtue. Similarly, she describes the Dauntmuch less bravery in terms of recklessness or rashness, which are actually vices directly opposed to the virtue of courage. These muddied examples of virtue are concerning in a teen novel because many type of teens are not going to have the values background to recognize the false knowledge of virtue presented in Divergent.

Another component of Aristotle’s meaning of a virtue is that the virtues perform not exist in isolation; they are facets of a virtuous perchild. Divergent certainly treats the virtues as separate objectives to pursue, and also vacillates on the question of whether different virtues are actually opposed to each other. Four is more correct than Tris as soon as it involves this question, informing her in the initially book that “I want to be brave, and selfless, and smart, and kind, and also hoswarm.” But Tris disagrees, saying: “It doesn’t job-related that means. One negative point goes ameans, and another poor thing relocations it. I traded cowardice for cruelty.” She honestly believes that one perchild cannot have actually 2 virtues.

I hoped that by the end of the series, Tris and also Four would espouse an extra specific expertise of virtue, but the last book, Allegiant, leaves the reader through the message, “Eexceptionally factivity loses somepoint when it gains a virtue: the Dauntmuch less, brave however cruel; the Erudite, intelligent however vain; the Amity, peaceful but passive; the Candor, hoswarm yet inconsiderate; the Abnegation, selfless but stifling.” I perform not accusage Roth of deliberately confutilizing teenagers about the nature of virtue, but I think she lacks a meaningful, correct knowledge of virtue. Unfortunately, this equates into possibly dangerous misconceptions about virtue in impressionable readers.

THE CONCLUSION

Considering the sex-related content, violence, lies, agendas, and also shaky philosophy, I advise not having actually your adolescents read Divergent. In situation you’re still unsure, let’s talk around the finishing of the series.

Spoiler right here, however Tris dies near the end of Allegiant, so the trilogy ends via a devadeclared Four receiving life advice from Tris’ best frifinish Christina. The important take away for teens below from the making it through major characters? “Sometimes life really sucks. But you know what I’m holding on for? … The moments that don’t suck. The trick is to notice them when they come roughly.”

Okay, I will admit tbelow is nothing inherently wrong through this advice. But honestly, I uncovered it type of depressing. The ideal we have the right to do is host out for the moments in life that don’t suck? Really?

How around seeking the true, the excellent, and the beautiful? How around living with passion and also purpose? How about seeking all the virtues and also becoming the finest version of yourself? How about striving to view each minute as a gift, each experiencing as a kiss, each joy as a taste of heaven?