Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut – Dystopian Books Review

I write a book over a period of months or years, and when I'm done with it, usually another year goes by before I see it in print. It's hard to be patient and wait
Margaret Haddix Dystopian Author Quotes#33
February 28, 2020
High-Rise by J. G. Ballard – Dystopian Books Review
February 29, 2020

Review, Synopsis, and Summary of Dystopian Science Fiction Novel Harrison Bergeron

Kurt Vonnegut wrote a dystopian science fiction novel Harrison Bergeron and published the book in the year 1961. The novel first published in The Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy became later re-published in the author’s collection in 1968. This novel received a Hall of Fame Award in 2019 under the Libertarian Futurist Society.

This post contains some affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I’ll earn a commission, at no additional cost to you.

Author: Kurt Vonnegut

Genre:  Dystopia, science fiction, political fiction

Pages: 9

Good reads rating: 4.22 of 5

My Ratings: 8.4 of 10

Published: 1961

Publisher: The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction 

Language: English

For The Latest Price: Harrison Bergeron

Review and Summary of Dystopian Science Fiction Novel Harrison Bergeron

***Warning Spoilers Below This Point***

The story set in the year 2081 focused on the Constitution of America and gone through 211th, 212th, and 213th amendments. Under these amendments, it stated that all the American nationals are equal and hence they may not be smarter, more physically able than others, and better looking. There are Handicapper General’s agents who are responsible to enforce the laws of equality. According to these laws, it forces the people who are too beautiful to wear handicaps. They use loud radios in intelligent peoples’ ears to disrupt their intelligent thoughts, and the people who are strong or athletic have to carry heavyweights.

The story begins when Harrison Bergeron, a 14-year-old boy and removed from his parents by the government. His crime was that he was an intelligent, athletic, strong and good-looking person. His parents George and Hazel Bergeron are hardly aware of this tragedy because Hazel just possesses an average intellect. However, George presents an above-average intelligence, but the government installed handicap radio to control his good skills.

As Hazel and George watch ballet on television, they are commenting on dancers who are hiding their attractiveness by masks. During this time, the thoughts of George are continuously being interrupted by the handicap radio, so Hazel asks George to lie down and give a rest to his handicap bag, which weighs over 47 pounds and locked around his neck. Hazel asks George to take away some weight of the bag, George does not want it, because he knows it is illegal.

The news reporter struggled during news reporting, and hence she asked Ballerina to read the bulletin for her. Ballerina wears the heaviest weight and hides her beauty under the mask. When she reads, they find her to have an exquisite voice. She then apologises and switches to an unpleasant voice. During the news, they announce it that Harrison escaped from prison. It shows his photograph on television. He is a 7 feet tall person and weighs by 300 lbs of handicaps. George watches the news and for a moment, he recognises his son, but then his thoughts become eliminated by radio.

Harrison to find a way for himself, so he enters the television studio to overthrow the government. He claims that he is the Emperor, and Ballerina is his Empress. He takes off his handicaps and that of Ballerina. For a little time, Harrison takes control. He asked the musicians to play the music on which both of them dance and then pause in mid-air for a kiss. The Handicapper General storms in the studio and murders both Harrison and Ballerina. Television turns dark. George is unaware of what happened on the television and when he comes, he sees Hazel is sad and crying. George asked the reason, and she says that something bad happened on television because she is crying, but she cannot remember what happened.

Final Say on Dystopian Science Fiction Novel Harrison Bergeron

The novel offers an exceptional writing style, and although it is a dystopia and we know this may not happen, still it is an emotional roller coaster ride. This novel receives my rating of 8.4 out of 10, although it ends sadly. Would I Re-read this novel? No. Am I glad I read it? Yes.

For The Latest Price: Harrison Bergeron

Latest posts by Max Atlas (see all)
Submit your review

Create your own review

Dystopian Books
Average rating:  
 0 reviews
Max Atlas
Max Atlas
I am Max Atlas; my only mission is to raise awareness of Dystopian fiction and share in a collective awakening. Together we will explore not only the best Dystopian Novels ever written but also new and upcoming Authors, giving future greats a platform to share their Dystopian Worlds.