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The most comprehensive source for everything DIVERGENT.



faction before blood, The Five Factions









Each year, all of the sixteen-year-olds from each faction take an Aptitude Test. The purpose of the test is to show which of the five factions each person belongs with. While waiting to take the test, they sit at tables in the cafeteria waiting to be called back to testing rooms ten at a time, two from each faction. The test is run mostly by Abnegation volunteers, but also includes a member of Dauntless and a member of Erudite to test the Abnegation students.

About the Aptitude Test: Tests cannot be administered by a member of the same faction as the test-taker. Test preparation is not allowed. The rooms where the tests are administered are used only for the Aptitude Test. The walls in the room are made of mirrors and the ceiling glows white with light. In the center of the room is a reclined chair that looks like a dentist’s chair. There is a machine next to it. After being instructed to sit in the seat, they are attached to the machine by wires and given a vial of clear liquid to drink. The test consists of a series of simulations that eliminates the factions one by one, leaving them with a single faction. The remaining faction at the end of the test is their recommended faction.

At the Choosing Ceremony the next day, they must each choose which faction to become a member of. They can chose to stay with their faction and remain near their family or to change factions and leave behind all that they know. The results of the Aptitude Test are taken into account, but the ultimate decision is left up to them.

During the ceremony, they are called up one at a time to the center of the room where five large metal bowls are located. Each bowl is filled with a substance that represents a particular faction: gray stone for Abnegation, water for Erudite, earth for Amity, lit coals for Dauntless, and glass for Candor. They are not allowed to speak. They are offered a knife and asked to cut their hand and sprinkle their blood over the bowl of the faction they choose. Once they have selected a faction, they stand in a group behind their chosen faction for the remainder of the ceremony.


Without a Faction, we have no purpose and no reason to live. – Natalie Prior.”

Take the Faction Quiz

“The faction system reflects my beliefs about human nature—that we can make even something as well-intentioned as virtue into an idol, or an evil thing. And that virtue as an end unto itself is worthless to us….everyone in Beatrice’s society believes that virtue is the end, the answer.”

From Amazon’s Q&A with Author Veronica Roth

When asked what the advantages to the society that she’s created in Divergent are, Veronica responded:

“All the advantages I see only seem like advantages to me because I live in our current society. For example, the members of their society don’t focus on certain things: race, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation, etc. I mean, a world in which you look different from the majority and no one minds? That sounds good to me. But when I think about it more, I realize that they’re doing the exact same thing we do, but with different criteria by which to distinguish ourselves from others. Instead of your skin color, it’s the color of your shirt that people assess, or the results of your aptitude test. Same problem, different system.”

“I have been asked in the past if I made the words [for the names of the factions] up. I didn’t, but I did intentionally choose unfamiliar words, for an assortment of reasons. One of them is that I wanted to slow down comprehension of what each faction stands for, so you learn as much by observing as by the name of the faction itself. Another is that the definitions of the more obscure words are more specific, in interesting ways. And a third is (since I’m being honest, here) that they sound cooler.

People have also asked me why the faction names are different parts of speech– three nouns (Candor, Amity, Abnegation) and two adjectives (Dauntless, Erudite). (For the record, I love this kind of grammar consciousness.) I am aware of that, and it was something I thought about in revisions. The reason for the discrepancy is that each faction chose their own names independently, just as they wrote their own manifestos independently, and formed their own customs and rules independently (to a certain extent, anyway). Keeping that in mind, I tried to pick the words that made the most sense for each faction without considering the other factions too much.”

{The First 100 Pages, and the DIVERGENT Dictionary}

When asked if she could add one more faction to the world within Divergent, Veronica responded:

“I tried to construct the factions so that they spanned a wide range of virtues. Abnegation, for example, includes five of the traditional “seven heavenly virtues:” chastity, temperance, charity, patience, and humility. That said, it would be interesting to have a faction centered on industriousness, in which diligence and hard work are valued most, and laziness is not allowed. They would be in constant motion, and would probably be happy to take over for the factionless. And hard-working people can certainly take their work too far, as all the factions do with their respective virtues. I’m not sure what they would wear, though. Overalls, probably.”