Essay: Richard Harland’s World Shaker

All good books entertain us, inform us and intrigue us, Richard Harland’s World Shaker does all of this whilst giving us a vey meaningful book which makes you want to keep reading. A strong reoccurring theme of inequality brings along themes of, discrimination to females on the World Shaker, the division of social classes and rebellion/revolution. Richard Harland has used all these themes to create a book that keeps readers on their toes as we journey through the unique history of the juggernaut ‘World Shaker’.

A large amount of female and male characters means that the readers experience what it is like for both genders on the World Shaker. Discrimination or disrespect of females is a major theme within the book as Gillabeth and others like her are treated with much less authority then the males on the ship. Gillabeth believes she should be eligible for the position of supreme commander on the Juggernaut. She believes Colbert (her brother) is not fit for the job if supreme commander because he is not a ‘true porpentine’. During the book Gillabeth rants at Colbert saying “only boys can be supreme commander…. But I’m the true porpentine!”. Discrimination of gender is a major subject in today’s society, in many countries women are unable to vote, ‘approximately 70% of people in the national minimum wage jobs are women’ said the UK Feminista, purchasing there own property, wearing whatever they want and trafficking, ‘up to 30,000 women are sacked each year for being pregnant, 440,000 women lose out on pay or promotion because of pregnancy’- The UK Feminista. These are all major problems occurring in country’s overseas. Gillabeth shows the effect of discrimination to women whilst making it informing and entertaining.

The division of social classes is the most prominent themes of world shaker. On the juggernaut there are many different social classes including: The ‘best’ families, the nobles and gentry, who served Queen Victoria; the artisans and middle-class who are the tradespeople that provide goods and services; the menials who are ‘modified’ filthies that are the servant class of the juggernaut, and lastly of workers the filthies who live in the bowel of the ship and feed coal to the boilers. These social classes continue into the school that Colbert attends with the children of the ‘best’ families supreme over the other kids, students of the higher classes always get higher marks than those of the lower classes, although the lower class students are smarter than the higher classes. The upper class in America ‘make approximately $150,000 plus a year’-Joao Alhanati, Investopedia. The middle class in America ‘make approximately $23,050-$100,000 or more annually’-Investopedia, the lower class however ‘make approximately $18,000-$23,050 per year’-Investopedia. The classes of the world shaker are similar to those in the United Kingdom.

World shaker explores the theme of rebellion/revolution, through the use of Riff a girl filthy, that is apart of the ‘Revolutionary Council’ that is made up of filthies who lead the rebellion against the boundaries set by the upper class. Col during the book also rebels against the traditions of the upper class by helping the filthies to start the revolution. Sir Mormus rebels against the filthies aggressive takeover, Riff rebels against the expectation of her gender and her social class. In today’s society if they don’t agree with something that the government has done or want to change they rebel or protest against it. Riff and the filthies shed a light on what people could be thinking about things occurring in their city of society.

Richard Harland’s book world shaker explores themes of discrimination of females, the division of social classes and rebellion/revolution whilst having an interesting story line with historical details.

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