Ballard we have the theme of confinement, corruption, paralysis, freedom and acceptance. Narrated in the third person by an unnamed narrator the reader realises after reading the story that Ballard may be exploring the theme of confinement. It is also interesting that the landlords tend to adhere to the required legislation that is in place even though it is also impractical. It is as though the government or those in authority are unable to get the balance right between urban and rural space. Which may suggest that there is a level of corruption within the corridors of power and which would again highlight the lack of any real insight into urban or rural planning.
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Setting[ edit ] The story is set in the future possibly c. Most of its inhabitants live in crowded central cities in order to preserve as much outside land as possible for farming, and as a result the world does not have a food problem, nor wars - since all governments devote themselves to addressing the problems caused by overpopulation.
In the city inhabited by the two protagonists, John Ward and Henry Rossiter, there is a mass shortage of space and the people live in small cellular rooms where they are charged by ceiling space, the legal maximum decreasing to 3. The city streets are enormously crowded, resulting in occasional pedestrian congestions that last days at a time.
Most old and historical buildings have been taken down to make way for new battery homes or divided into hundreds of small cubicles.
Plot[ edit ] Ward lives in a future dystopian society with his close friend, Rossiter. After being kicked out of their homes, they decide to move in together so that they have space and split the payments. This is mildly important, as they have never been in a room where there were no people.
As the two bask in the extra personal space that they have never known, things become complicated when they allow two other close friends to share the space, and the ensuing snowball effect of their invitees bringing family to live in the room. In the end, the "luxurious" space comes to be the same type of crowded cubicle that they were trying to escape from in the first place.
Ward becomes the landlord when there are so many people. He has always hated landlords and thinks that they are greedy and rude. He slowly starts to become what he always hated.
J. G. Ballard
In early , they began to intern Allied civilians, and Ballard was sent to the Lunghua Civilian Assembly Center with his parents and younger sister. He spent over two years, the remainder of World War II, in the internment camp. His family lived in a small area in G block, a two-storey residence for 40 families. He attended school in the camp, the teachers being camp inmates from a number of professions.
Billennium by J.G. Ballard