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Worldshaker

  • Date Submitted: 09/17/2011 10:03 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 47.3 
  • Words: 813
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Intro: Worldshaker, a novel by Richard Harland, entertains and informs the reader. The novel is based onboard a juggernaut, a representation of an indomitable and crushing power. The society onboard Worldshaker are split by social classes, where the Upper Decks people are the elites and the filthies toil below. Colbert Porpentine is a sixteen year old boy, who is announced the successor of his grandfather, however Col’s perfect, illustrious world is turned upside down with the unexpected meeting of a filthy, Riff.

In the novel, Harland informs the reader about social classes in the Victorian era.   The Upper Decks people, the menials and the filthies represent these social classes. The Upper Decks are superior, living privileged lives and uphold positions of power, while the filthies and the menials are inferior and mostly confined to the lower decks for labour. This informs the reader of what it would have been like for the working class people, where the superior class’s comfort and power relies on the lower classes in society. The Upper Decks people are portrayed to the reader as people who live lives of luxury, however obtain little knowledge of the situation surrounding them. Riff’s perception of the Upper Decks people is bleak and she believes to be an Upper Decks person “it means cruelty and bullyin’ and tramplin’ on anyone weaker.” (p.215). The menials are filthies who are changed, the Upper Decks people torture their bodies “and do horrible things,”(p.4) to them. Filthies are the lowest class onboard Worldshaker, living in appalling conditions deprived of sanity and enough food, through their portrayal the reader is led to believe filthies are subhuman bestial creatures, however the events of the novel lead to the conclusion that “they were the same as everyone else.” (p.208). By representing the social classes in the Victorian era as Upper Decks people, menials and filthies, the novel provides the reader with significant information that is an example...

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