For a novel, which empathises betrayal and a dark society full of corruption and immorality, a clockwork orange seems to endorse a remarkable view on such characters in power. Dr Brodsky, Dr Branom and the discharge officer are the ones who empathise these particular themes in this chapter. Dr Brodsky and Dr Branom are responsible for the treatment of the Ludovico technique, which as a result ‘cured’ Alex. Dr Brodsky is written to be of a very prominent status with abundant power.
But what we learn at this point in the novel is how Dr Brodsky uses his power in order to exploit those who are powerless. “He like patted me on the plectho and said: ‘Good, good. A very promising start'” Dr Brodsky has a patronising tone in the way he talks to and treats Alex. He treats Alex as if he was like a robot or a machine, which wasn’t able to function without the dependency of those who are in charge. Dr Brodsky and Dr Branom, from Alex’s eye, are conniving, deceitful adults. Alex explains to us how it is just as bad to make the films about violence as it is to commit acts of violence.
And what is even worse is how it comes across in the novel, that the doctors are getting a sinister pleasure from torturing Alex and disregarding his human rights. It seems as if they are not trying to teach Alex to better his life, but they are punishing him for his previous violent actions. This injustice shows just how corrupt the Doctors are and how they misuse their power, it goes to show just how illiberal people can be. As Dr Branom’s character develops though the chapter, I find that he less sinister than Dr Brodsky does, this may be due to him coming across to me as rather nai??ve and powerless under Dr Brodsky’s power.
To a certain extent we can say that Dr Branom relates to Alex. Alex believes that Dr Branom ‘was forced’ into taking part in the treatment, in the same way Alex was. Personally, I find Dr Branom very narrow-minded and opinionated. Dr Branom neglects the idea of choice, unlike the prison chaplain; Dr Branom is not concerned about Alex’s moral responsibility and how one has the choice in this. Dr Branom’s explanation on goodness is that one who is not righteous by the definition of society is an invalid.
“What is happening to you now is what should happen to any normal healthy human organism contemplating the actions of the forces of evil, the workings of the principle of destruction. You are being made sane, you are being made healthy. ” Near the end of the chapter, Alex comes across ‘ a very queer sort of veck. ‘ At first the discharge officer comes across to me as if he is genuinely interested in Alex and almost seems like a friend to him, in the same way that we are.
The way he treats Alex decently, allow us as readers to actually like him but in the back of my mind I am suspicious of the discharge officer, as I feel he is going to let us down in the same way as the previous characters did. But it appears to me as what the discharge officer is saying to Alex, and the motives of the questions, are the things that the doctors we meant to ask, but failed to. It shocks both Alex and me as the reader when the discharge charge officer suddenly switches to being of the same kind of person as the doctors. The discharge officer, much to the likely hood of the doctors, uses his superiour power over Alex “Would you like to punch me in the face?
” This shows how the discharge officer is testing Alex, almost framing him to a violent action the same way the droogs did. This again shows how someone who came across as a potential friend betrays Alex. This shows how the prison chaplain is a coward the same way the doctors are. I find it ironic that it is those who are in power and have the position to look after and better Alex are the ones who are corrupting it with the misuse of power. This shows how none of them are actually morally better then Alex. Burgess has written a clockwork orange in first person.
Alex is our ‘humble narrator’ throughout the novel; the situations and issues we come across in the novel are seen through the eyes of Alex. Burgess gets his views across though Alex, so the way situations are described and opinions are reflected on such characters indirectly influence my thoughts and reactions to these characters. On the other hand I can say that our reactions and opinions on characters would be rather bias, as they influenced by Alex but on one level or another we all relate to him. Burgess has written Alex to have characteristics, which are present in all of us.
This is Burgess’ way of telling us that we are not different in nature to Alex. So the way Alex is treated and betrayed, instantly effect our views on Dr Brodsky, Dr Branom and the discharge officer, as we are emotionally attached to Alex. Burgess has made us attached to Alex, by the tone of the novel. The tone up to this point was open, direct and friendly. And it makes us involved in the story as we feel Alex is a friend and relays one us as he is confiding in us. But I find this specific chapter to have a change in tone, almost if a detached tone. This chapter is far more pessimistic than the other previous chapters.
Burgess may have done this to test our friendship and loyalty with Alex. Burgess is trying to show how so-called friends throughout the novel have let Alex down, and to empathises his weakness by choosing not to use archaism and childish language, that Alex is known to use, in this chapter. This foregrounds the greater power of the doctors and the discharge officer, which allow us to sympathise with Alex, as he is at mercy of these characters. This has influenced my views on the other characters and how I feel anger toward those who have put him in this position of weakness.
Burgess’ use of suspense also kept me wary of such characters. Throughout the novel there are major disappointment in characters, who we thought were trying to help Alex, who were meant to Alex, but ended up doing the total opposite. Burgess builds up our hopes and falsely tricks us into liking these characters and having faith in them. Burgess builds this up to a climax and instantly shatters the faith and preconceptions we had had. This makes us cautious of characters and in this chapter after the letdown Alex received from Dr Brodsky and Dr Branom, we do not want Alex or ourselves as the audience to trust the discharge officer.
But we are led to believe that he may be the one person in this chapter who is not corrupt. When the discharge officer lets down Alex, we are angry that we got tricked and disappointed yet again, and this makes my reaction towards the discharge officer diabolical. As he has not only let down Alex, but he has also let me down. One dominant theme in a clockwork orange is politics. In many views it can be seen as an one sided protest against political control. All though the novel there is a strong conflict between political control and human nature. The world in a clockwork orange can been seen as dystopia.
This is a world that Burgess created, with a cynical society that is politically driven. Burgess created this world to represent our politically controlled world and how there is evil and corruption within it. Burgess displays two different aspects of political control in a clockwork orange, one where there is no sense of politics and another where there is politics. In the first part of the novel there no form of the government and political control and the society in this part is unbalanced, it shows the power and control that the youths have and the weakness the adults have.
In part two political controls in introduced and we notice the switch in power, through Alex being subjected to political control by conditioning. And in part three we realise just how corrupt the government is by understanding that nothing has changed between the start of the book where there was no control, to the end where control was shown to be of more pernicious aim, that did not benefit the world of a clockwork orange. The government proposes the Ludovico treatment on criminals to reform them so that they are fit to re-enter society.
This is not only beneficial to criminals, such as Alex, but it is also improving the society and protecting them against crime. We later lean how the Ludovico technique didn’t work, and instead of making Alex ‘cured’ it, the influences of politics made it worse. Which is really showing that his character did not conform with the control he was subjected to and therefore this control was not positive and also it meant he was restricted like he couldn’t listen to the music anymore because when you delegate control and regulations and affect peoples freedom.
The main idea here that a clockwork orange is trying to put forward is that in a completely non-existing political constitution you have complete freedom. We learn that the purpose of the Ludovico treatment was not to improve and protect the society, but was of a more sinister plan. Chief Chasso carries out the Ludovico technique on Alex. If the treatment is successful he will be re-elected into the government. Chief Chasso’s sinister agenda is to clear the prison of criminals, ” Soon we may be needing all our prison space for political offenders,”
We can see that his motivations were politically driven, and how he disregarded society and humanity. In part three we notice just how corrupt the government is, by Burgess’s use of the adults in the novel. F. Alexander, who was at Alex’s mercy in part one, is now a sinister, corrupt man who has a dark political agenda. F. Alexander controlled by violence and society used Alex to go against the government. His passion for politics drives him to kill Alex in order to progress politically.
This again shows just how corrupt those in the government are and instead of protecting the society and human nature, they are doing the total opposite, by placing those who are inappropriate into power. The government employs criminals to become police officers, which simultaneously has a repercussion on both the justices of the humanity and of the society. Burgess uses Alex to get his conception of the ‘boastful politics’ across. Alex finally realises, with devastating consequences, which those who were physically driven by the need of political power have made him to suffer.
We realise how extreme the political control on him, in the way Burgess connects the reader with Alex who is the complete opposite from the democratic. In my opinion, a clockwork orange can be seen as a one sided protest against political control. Even through Burgess shows both sides of the argument, he persuaded the reader to understand that the unconditional man, free from the corrupt political control is the better man, even though the conditioned, political immoral controlled man is better in has behaviour in terms to society.