Study Guide

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back Fate vs. Free Will

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Fate vs. Free Will

There's no shortage of "destiny" talk in The Empire Strikes Back, but Luke Skywalker proves time and time again that this story is a choose-your-own-adventure. Some predict that Luke will become the greatest Jedi who ever lived. Others say that he will follow in his father's footsteps to become a villain. A few say that he has worse breath than a sarlacc, but that's another story for another time.

No matter what prophecies are pronounced, however, Luke continually defies fate and take his future into his own hands.

Questions About Fate vs. Free Will

  1. Does Luke have free will or is he merely being guided towards his destiny? Explain.
  2. Who or what is the other "hope" that Yoda mentions?
  3. Was Yoda correct when he said that leaving Dagobah would fate Luke to join the dark side? Why or why not?
  4. Can any character in the movie actually see the future? Explain.

Chew on This

Although people continually talk to him about fate and destiny, Luke proves time and time again that he has control over his own life.

Although Luke tries to control his own fate, he ends up doing exactly what he is fated to do every time.

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