D503 As An Emergent Subject and Echo of the OneState

“The cheerful little crystal bell in my headboard dings 7:00 A.M.: time to get up. To the right and left through the glass walls I see something like my own self, my own room, my own clothes, my own movements, and all repeated a thousand times. It cheers you up: You see yourself as part of an immense, powerful, single thing” (33-34).

Part of what intrigues me so much of D503’s journey in We is his transformation as an emergent subject, beginning with identification and evolving to alienation. It is in this passage that we not only receive a visual of what it’s like to live within the glass walls of Zamyatin’s dystopia, but we are able to glean from D-503’s narration the voice of the government’s oppressive restraints on the attitudes and beliefs of each of the subjects. In D-503’s account, he assumes possession of each of the things he sees multiplied apartment after apartment, “my own self, my own room, my own clothes, my on movements,” (34). Ironically, it seems, none of these things are his in the first place. Each identified, be it his self, his room, his clothes, his movements, are shared not only between those he sees depicted directly in front of him, but among EVERYONE in the OneState. Additionally, in the conclusion of the quote, however, “you” is repeated, identifying the ideals that have brainwashed D-503. For D-503 to address his reader as “you” is to establish a relationship between himself and whoever is meant to be reading his entry. It appears, however, he does not really seem to be addressing his reader with his own thoughts at all, but rather reiterating ideas of the OneState which are no more his thoughts than any other number among him. The relationship is illusory: it is rather an echoing of OneState ideals disguised as genuinely felt opinions of D-503.