"Droogs" and "Linguists": Resistance, Control, and Institutionalism in Anthony Burgess' A Clockwork Orange and Suzette Haden Elgin's Native Tongue.
MetadataShow full item record
My thesis, which studies Anthony Burgess’ A Clockwork Orange and Suzette Haden Elgin’s Native Tongue, discusses the success and failure of achieving agency in a dystopian society. By drawing on Althusser’s theory of “State Apparatuses,” I argue Alex, the protagonist of A Clockwork Orange, fails to gain autonomy, as he is unaware of how he has become institutionalized; yet, Nazareth, the protagonist of Native Tongue, achieves control through the construct of a new familial institution and the development of a female-centric language, Láadan. Chapter two focuses on how Alex is a victim of his environment, and becomes a part of the system he is trying to resist. Chapter three argues that Nazareth succeeds in gaining agency and, along with her female community, creates a matriarchal “State Apparatus.” Taken together, then, these books highlight that communal effort is necessary to challenge state control.