‘divergent’ faction manifestos!

this morning i saw a link that let me read the faction manifestos of the five factions in veronica roth’s amazing new book, Divergent.  it was very very interesting to read through them.  you can read them all here. Divergent is the first in a planned trilogy.  i had some ideas about what might be happening next when i finished reading the first one, but now after reading the manifestos i think there are even more clues, and i am very excited.

i had thought that i would choose the erudite faction, if i lived in the dystopian society described in the book.  i normally identify as ravenclaw when it comes to harry potter, i consider myself a nerd who loves to read and learn new things.  but the erudite faction manifesto was my least favorite.  and it’s obvious that the current erudite leader, jeanine, does not adhere to the outlined principles of her own group.  and it says they are supposed to pick a new leader when the current one reaches 55 or shows signs of a loss of mental functions.  she is described as being middle-aged.  i am wondering how close to this age she might be, and what she would do if confronted by it. but she’s already broken the manifesto anyway because she has withheld information and manipulated knowledge to her own gain, and she is obviously power hungry.  so…that should be interesting.

meanwhile, book one ends with tris and co. headed to the amity faction seeking asylum.  the amity manifesto, which is all about living in peace and harmony, has a section at the end footnoted as belonging to the original manifesto when the faction was founded, but that has since been excluded.  it’s the part that says conflict is okay if it is in defense of someone.

One Friend says to Another: “Friend, today I fought with my enemy.”

The Other Friend says: “Why did you fight with your enemy?”

“Because they were about to hurt you.”

“Friend, why did you defend me?”

“Because I love you.”

“Then I am grateful.”

SO, that is definitely going to come into play. because the amity people are not going to want to join the fight for or against anybody, and that’s going to be bad…but one or two of them might, if caleb or four can show them an old copy of the original manifesto and convince them.  the other sections of the amity manifesto are conversations like this one, except they end with one person telling the other why they shouldn’t have fought (leave the past alone, don’t let others’ words provoke you, don’t be selfish, etc.)

i really really liked the abnegation and dauntless manifestos.  i guess that just leaves candor, which i guess i have no strong feelings about at this time.

the abnegation one is really short.  if i chose that faction, i would say the version with “and only God remains” at the end.  (it says that line is optional).

i will be my undoing

if i become my obsession

i will forget the ones i love

if i do not serve them.

i will war with others

if i refuse to see them.

therefore i choose to turn away

from my reflection,

to rely not on myself

but on my brothers and sisters,

to project always outward

until i disappear

(and only God remains).

the dauntless manifesto is longer–they are all longer than abnegation, actually.  dauntless is three pages.  one of my favorite lines from it was quoted by four in the book, but there are some other good ones as well:

we believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another.

we believe in shouting for those who can only whisper, in defending those who cannot defend themselves.

we believe, not just in bold words but in bold deeds to match them.

we believe that pain and death are better than cowardice and inaction, because we believe in action.

we do not believe that we should be allowed to stand idly by.

those lines from dauntless, and the bit at the end of amity that was cut out, make me really think about whether violence can ever be justified.  it’s hard to argue against these inspiring words.  i tend to think that as a christian i should be a pacifist, but it is something i struggle with.  intellectually, i mean.  but is there a way to defend others and be willing to suffer pain and death rather than standing idly by without harming others? or at least without killing them.  like shepherd book in the show firefly–he only shoots kneecaps or shoulders, disabling people without killing them.  maybe that is the best position.  hmm.  something to continue thinking about!

***update*** if you buy the paperback version of Divergent (just released), it comes with a bunch of extras at the end including the Faction Manifestos.

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12 Comments

Filed under Books, philosophy

12 responses to “‘divergent’ faction manifestos!

  1. i’ve just been reminded of a good line in the candor manifesto that i actually really liked: “we know that while we are flawed in a unique way, we are not unique because we are flawed.” it goes on to talk about being honest about our flaws and accepting others’ as well.

    • Agreed

      i liked how the abnegation manifesto was shortest. no extra stuff, just the basics, because that’s kind of how they are. denying of self.

      • true. and i liked how it mentions they “turn away from [their] reflection”, because it ties in to how they actually don’t use mirrors. it would probably drive me crazy at first, but after awhile i bet it would make you less self-centered if you stopped worrying about how you looked.

  2. the abnegation one is modeled like a daily prayer, something that could be memorized and repeated often.

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  4. Alkahest

    Do you have any idea the amount of skill that is required to only give people non-lethal injuries when your moving, their moving, and you’re being shot at? You’ve obviously never even fired a weapon if you can be that flippent about only non-lethal injuries. If someone ever starts shooting at you I dare you to have even just the concentration to focus only on thier knee caps (never mind the skill to shot them)… even with training some people would never reach the level of skill where it was possible to guarentee non-lethal injuries in every scenario.

    • well then, maybe a Christian shouldn’t shoot at people in those situations. is it ever justifiable for a Christian to kill someone? in what situations are the only two options to kill or be killed? in these situations, is preservation of self really the most important thing for a Christian to be concerned with? probably not, considering we are to follow Jesus’ example who was the epitome of selflessness. is it okay for a Christian to kill one person in order to protect another person? I don’t know! I think these are very difficult questions to answer, and being a weapons expert isn’t really relevant for hashing out hypothetical ethical scenarios. if it is impossible to shoot only to wound in the real world, or if it is impossible for me personally, then i guess that means the right thing for me to do in some situations might be not to shoot back at all.

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  6. LeoCadia Peaslee

    i like all of the faction manifestos but i have to say that the dauntless manifesto is my favorite. it took the test that is in the back of the book divergent and i am most definitely dauntless. i cant wait for the movie divergent to come out

  7. Hi! This is kind of off topic but I need some advice from an established blog.

    Is it very hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick. I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure where to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions? Thank you

    • Hi! It’s not hard to set a blog up if you use a site like wordpress, blogger, or tumblr where you pretty much just have to select a design layout. I think the hardest part about starting a blog is deciding what you want the theme or purpose to be; once you have a theme it will be easier to think of topics to write about. Blogging should be fun, so you should write about things that interest you. On this blog I focus on books and movies with a dash of general nerdiness, but some of my favorite blogs that I follow focus exclusively on certain genres of books, or movies, or discussing language changes. If you have a clear theme of topics to post about I think you’ll be likely to collect more followers, too, since people will have an idea of what they can expect. (I don’t like to follow blogs that post about totally random topics unless I know the person in real life.) Also, once you have a theme you can look for other blogs with similar themes and follow them or comment on their posts to get more interactions with like-minded people.
      Good luck with your blog, and have fun!

  8. Beatrice decides to transfer to Dauntless, the faction recognized for courage,
    and also must aim to overlook her Abnegation, selfless
    qualities, as well as come to be someone new. By following tricks to conceal, and skills to find out, Tris battles by following her new fears, good friends, as well as opponents; plus there’s the possibility for a love interest in the form of
    Four, a Dauntless initiate ner. Will Tris be able to understand the secrets he’s concealing?

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