Nature of Evil

  • Human beings constantly look for ways to explain the unpleasant events of life, and often blame the intangible force of ‘evil’ for events.
  • Paranoia sets in as people suspect many possible manifestations of the Devil (evil), such as witches, possessions, serious criminals, or in the case of The Chrysalids, simple genetic deviations.

Evolution cannot be denied

  • Life is based on change through evolution, causing even humanity to be in a state of flux, always changing, hopefully improving, and leaving behind those who cannot or will not adapt.
  • Both the title and the resolution of this novel emphasize the importance of accepting the pattern of Darwin’s theory of evolution. The “normal” people of Waknuk cling to their idea that they are the final, perfect form of humanity. They attempt to crush the “superior variant”, the telepaths.

Ignorance and Bigotry/Genocide

  • The people of Waknuk, for example, purge from their midst anything that is not normal or, at least, does not look like their concept of normal.
  • In the history of humankind, certain groups have always reacted negatively to other groups they feel are different.

Hypocrisy as a Universal Human Condition

  • David’s society, despite its concern for the True Image, allows the great-horses to be bred and used.
  • These horses are huge, far bigger than any normal horse. but, they do twice the work of a normal horse at less than twice the feed.
  • For the sake of profit, the True Image can be ignored. Hypocrisy is shown to be a universal human condition and the people of Waknuk are no different from us.

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