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"We're in a new world. We're in a world in which the possibility of terrorism, married up with technology, could make us very, very sorry that we didn't act."

- Condoleezza Rice
Former Secretary of State

Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother is representative of a theme of government surveillance and security. With the anxieties and underlying problems of the story centering and stemming from this, the banes and boons of technological advancement drive the plot of the novel. In an age where technology surrounds and encompasses our daily lives, the utilization of technology as a mechanism to control and instill fear is a notion that is not only easily relatable in Little Brother, but is relevant to today’s society; especially post September 11. As Doctorow centers the book on Marcus, a high school student from San Francisco who witnesses a terrorist attack on the Bay Bridge, a glimpse into how security, which for some is synonymous with technology, can quickly encroach upon rights and promote a heightened feeling of vulnerability as opposed to security is seen. Detained by the Department of Homeland Security, Marcus and his friends are questioned, tortured, and traumatized by a system that had once come to be considered a mode of protection, not attack. As Doctorow takes the reader along on a journey following Marcus as he takes the initiative to rebel against the controls of a new post terrorist attack society, the utilization of available technology to challenge the government’s observations on civilians is reminiscent of civilian response to the heightened security measures that have come about post attack on the World trade Center.

With this in mind, the following hypertext will use Doctorow’s novel as the foundation of analysis of a current issue Doctorow touches base on within Little Brother: the utilization of technology in ways that can lead to a loss in a sense of security and an increase in vulnerability. Focusing on five distinct questions: 1. Who is responsible for our security? 2. What is done when the feeling of security is taken away? 3. Where is security seen most prevalent? 4. When is/has security been violated, 5. Why and how do we react when such violations occur?

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Why and how do we react?