V for Vendetta and The Book Thief

Inherently influenced by their composer’ milieu, texts often provide insight into the prevalent values of their respective contexts. Drawing influences from the injustices of their contexts, both the novel The Book Thief (2005) by Markus Zusak and the dystopian film V for Vendetta (2006) directed by James McTiegue highlight the importance of language to the human experience. Whilst Zusak incorporates the influence of rising Fascist Regimes in Europe during his upbringing, McTeigue offers a commentary upon the War on Terrorism in the early 21st Century. Using these contextual influences, I have reflected such values in my poster upon how the power of language contributes to totalitarian brutality and beauty of humanity.

The examination of both The Book Thief and V for Vendetta perpetuate the subsequent destruction of hope through the subjugation to totalitarian brutality. Emerging from Zusak’s personal and Germany’s political context at the time, The Book Thief explores the ‘eye witness’ accounts of Zusak’s German and Austrian parents during the tumultuous and imperial rule of Adolf Hitler and his influence on Anti-Semitic and Totalitarian Regimes. Zusak perpetuates the destruction of hope to be instigated by the recurring motif of power of words. Zusak emphasises the encroaching nature of totalitarian brutality and the ability of words to inflict harm through the metaphor and colour symbolism in, “ blood leaked from her nose and licked at her lips. Cuts had opened. All from words.” The metaphor perpetuates words as being capable of metaphorically inflicting harm, while simultaneously dehumanising an individual. Through the colour symbolisation of red, Zusak indicts the rambunctious nature of totalitarian regimes and their capacity to eradicate hope. Likewise, influenced by the zeitgeist of 20th Century Britain, McTeigue’s V for Vendetta similarly explores the loss of intellectual liberty at the hands of oppressive Fa…

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