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The group that occupies Number 43 belongs to the CCU, which is a Communist party based in England. They do not like the middle class, but strive to help the blue collar worker. The group does not like Margaret Thatcher, who is prime minister of England at this time. They feel that she does not understand the plight of the lower classes and only cares about the upper classes. The group is not linked to the Communist party in Russia, which do not find them a serious group. They are also denied by the IRA. The group is not taken seriously because they do not understand the true struggle of communist life and seem more to be play acting at being communists. They have all of their creature comforts and many come from a middle class background and have never held a job.
Communism to them is what they have read about not what they have experienced. They come off as a group of kids who do not know how the world works or how to affect change. Their politics does not mesh with the view of Communism and the workers that they claim to support do not like their radical behavior at their demonstrations. They are more like children playacting than terrorists.
Alice Mellings is the person who gets everything done for the group. She is like their mother taking care of food and having a clean and safe place to live. Alice sees the group at Number 43 as her family, since her own family does not approve of her aimless lifestyle. Alice’s stealing from them repeatedly to fund her and her friends’ lifestyle creates more of a rift between Alice and her parents. She is confused by this not seeming to understand that her actions have consequences and that she is disrespecting her parents and causing them hardships.
Alice’s relationship with Jasper causes problems between Alice and her family. They would readily support her, but see her relationship with Jasper as destructive. He uses her to get a place to live, food and security, while giving her nothing back in return. She sees him as her family, but he steals from her and leaves her to deal with domestic issues, while he goes off with his new friends to demonstrations and to fight for their cause.
The group struggles with morality when they begin their planning of a bombing. Alice is left out of a meeting to discuss when the bombing is to take place. The group does this on purpose because they know that she will be against having the bombing during the day when people can be injured. She wants to make a statement with the bombing, but does not want to injury innocent people.
Caroline does not take part in the bombing for this reason. She feels it is wrong to injure innocent people. When the bomb goes off early and Faye is killed, they group understand the consequences of their action. People are killed and many injured. The group scatters like scared children not wanting to be caught at the bombing site. Alice questions her morality as she takes in Faye’s death and the implications of their actions.
The group at Number 43 see themselves as Communists fighting for the right of the working man against the establishment. They want to see a shift in power from the middle class to the working class. They do their part by participating in demonstrations to make people aware of their cause.
The group wants to be part of the IRA or be acknowledged by Russia, but they are seen as amateurs and not taken seriously by either group. This leads them to feel unappreciated and undervalued. Their answer is to plan a bombing at a hotel to bring them prestige. The bombing does not go off as planned and members of the group are killed or hurt and they disband so as not to get caught by the police. The bombing is credited to the IRA so the group at Number 43 does not get the acknowledgement that they feel that they deserve.
The revolutionaries are against any kind of authority. Police, government and anyone who goes along with the establishment is seen as their enemy. This fight against authority leads them to clashes with the police. Each member of the group has at some point spent some time in jail, whether it is a few days or months. They see this as a badge of honor and get a thrill of running from the police when attending demonstrations or committing acts of vandalism.
The police see them as blights against society. They are mostly middle class kids who are ashamed of their privilege and to make themselves feel better demonstrate for the rights of the downtrodden. The group is seen as freeloaders who take money from the government without contributing to the system. They act as if they are going against the system when they do not work and spend their time demonstrating, yet they take handouts from the government for not working.
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