V for Vendetta, published in 1990 by Alan Moore, is
a graphic novel set in a future version of England taken over by fascism. The fascism
in the book is similar in cruelty of Nazi Germany in World War II, with the dictator,
Adam Susan, using all of his power to oppress everyone in the country, such as
installing concentration camps to round up certain types of people. It takes
for one individual, called V, to rebel against the government for the sake of
freedom/liberty and anarchy, which is the ability for an individual to choose
their own decisions without authority telling them otherwise. V commits serious
acts of terror against the fascist government so he can liberate the people in
England from the crutches of fascism. The novel, V for Vendetta suggests that government
cannot provide freedom, and that freedom can only be achieved when government
ceases to exist.


the government does not live up to their promises about freedom. In chapter
five of the first third of the book, V talks to the statue of liberty, or Madam
Justice as V calls it, and essentially talks to himself. Within this talk, V
states that he does not believe in liberty, and decides to follow anarchy as he
says this quote in his talk to the statue of liberty: “She has taught me that justice
is meaningless without freedom. She is honest, she makes no promises and breaks
none.” (Moore, 1990, 41). The message this quote is trying to convey is
that politicians often make promises in their political campaigns that they
later not keep, often pertaining to giving their citizens more rights, more
freedom and justice. So when they get elected, they forget what they say during
their political campaign and thus no progress for freedom happens. Since anarchy
means the lack of a government, this means that there is no one to lie and no
one to make promises for the sake of anarchy.


the government is only able to restrict freedom. When the reader gets formally
introduced to the dictator, Adam Susan, Susan gives a full speech of his goals
and ideals. In this speech, Adam Susan explicitly states multiple times within
this speech that he does not believe in individual freedom, such as in this
quote: “I
will not hear talk about freedom, I will not hear talk about individual
liberty. They are luxuries, I do not believe in luxuries” (Moore, 1990, 37).  Here, Adam Susan does not believe that
people should be able to live with a luxurious lifestyle. This is because the
war made such luxuries unaffordable, as quoted by Adam Susan again: “The war put
the paid on luxury. The war put paid on freedom.” (Moore, 1990, 37). Luxury
in this statement refers to ability to buy and maintain such luxuries. As such,
Adam Susan states that: “The only freedom left to my people is the freedom to
starve, the freedom to die, the freedom to live in a world of chaos. Should I
allow them that freedom? I think not. I think not.” (Moore, 1990, 38). This
quote in particular shows how restrictive Adam Susan is for the sake of protecting
his people,

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freedom can be acquired when one leaves the area of control by the government,
as shown with Eric Finch. Eric Finch is a recurring character within the novel,
being a police officer for the Norsefire government who often investigates terrorist
acts V has committed throughout the book. In the last third of the book, Finch
drives off to a former concentration camp in search of V and decides to intake
LSD. After taking in the drug, he starts hallucinating and then realizes how
much he does not like his job, and starts questioning himself. “We treated
you so badly, all the hateful things he printed, did, and said…but please.
Please don’t despise us” (Moore, 1990, 213). Finch starts hallucinating
about the friends he had, and he realizes how badly the Norsefire party and the
police treated them just cause of their sexuality and takes the blame for it.
Finch starts questioning even more, and says: “I look at this pattern, but
where are the answers? Who imprisoned me here? Who keeps me here? Who can
release me? Who’s controlling and constraining my life, except…me? I…I’m free.
(Moore, 1990, 215). This is when Finch starts to abandon the police
force and does his work by himself, after realizing that it was his own freedom
to choose the decision of working under the government, which ironically ends
up giving all his freedom away. This signifies the moment of freedom found when
law cannot reach and constrict an individual’s actions.


The novel V for Vendetta states that liberty can only be acquired with a
lack of government in place. 

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