I recently entered an essay contest about Ayn Rands Anthem. I was asked to explain why the characters rarely reached the age of forty-five. Below is an exert from my essay.
Equality 7-2521 says that " When a miracle happens and some [of the Old Ones] live to be forty-five, they are the Ancient Ones." Many reasons can be found as to why most people do not reach the age of forty-five. An individualized world can have a huge impact on a person and whether he or she wants to live or die.
Most people, by the time they reach the age of forty-five, are weak. They have been worked hard their whole lives. Over exercise can severely wear the body down. With a hectic schedule, the people could not get enough rest. Working the same schedule everyday with no rest, with the exception of maybe just a few hours, is too much work. Weakness could have also been brought forth by punishment. If someone stepped out of line in any way when they were younger, they were severely punished. They were sent to the Palace of Corrective Detention where they would receive their punishment. The Palace would strip the scoundrel and then beat him or her with a whip. The beatings from the corrective detention officers could wear down the body.
In a world with no love, no hope, and no freedom what is there to live for? Having nothing to make life worth while can make living to see the age of forty-five a miracle. No one can express his or her own individuality in any way; they have to be the same as every other person.