Who is Equality 7-2521? And what sets him off on his path of discovery, driving him to confront his society’s most deeply held beliefs? This lesson is the first of four in which you’ll study the story of Anthem, chapter by chapter, and analyze the character of its hero, Equality 7-2521.

In this lesson, you’ll focus on Chapter 1, the longest in the book, in which Equality 7-2521 recounts the story of his life and describes his society. He claims he was born with a “curse” that drives him to commit sins and crimes. But what are his sins and crimes? And what is his “curse,” really?

Spoiler alert: This lesson assumes that students have read Anthem.