What Is The Voice & Why Is It Important?
5 mins read

What Is The Voice & Why Is It Important?


  • The Voice in Dune is a powerful tool with strict training requirements for effective use.
  • Paul and Jessica showcase the Voice’s influence, from retrieving water to escaping captors.
  • The ability symbolizes ultimate power and political influence, posing a threat to enemies.



The Voice in Dune plays an important role as it is a powerful and dangerous ability. The power was introduced in Dune Part 1 and is a key concept of the lore established by Frank Herbert, author of the original Dune books. The Voice could be plainly explained as an ancient audio-neuro control tool linked to the influential Bene Gesserit Sisterhood, whose breeding program nurtures the ancient abilities of Paul Artreides. Paul’s mother, Lady Jessica has been part of the Bene Gesserit for most of her life and has the ability to use the Voice in her favor.

The film introduces Paul and Jessica with a small showcase of what the Voice can do, as Jessica demands Paul to use the Voice to make her hand him the bottle of water. While Paul is shown to be a beginner early, he later uses it to successfully make his Harkonnen captors release his mother. At the end of Dune: Part II, Paul has developed the skill to the point that he can use it successfully on the power Bene Gesserit member, Reverend Mother Mohiam, signaling just how powerful of an ability it can be in the wrong hands.


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The Voice Can Influence Others

The Bene Gesserit Ability Compels People To Follow Orders

Throughout the decades, the Bene Gesserit mastered the Voice as a unique power in battle, taking over the enemy’s mind by altering their voices’ pitch quality and activating sleeping neural transmissions. In simple words, they demand something from a specific target, and the target obeys promptly. The Voice instructions must be sharp and straight to the point, otherwise, they’ll be delivered in the person’s ordinary voice and have no effect, enabling the target to prepare against the Voice.

It requires years of Bene Gesserit training and strong willpower that applies differently from person to person to finally master the Voice’s full potential. Although Paul initially shows very limited control of the Voice in the first film, it remains an impressive showcase for a boy his age, especially considering he’s a male Bene Gesserit, thus almost a persona non grata.

Naturally, Paul’s similitude with the Kwisatz Haderach prophecy explains why he’s progressing so fast. On the other hand, Lady Jessica has studied and grasped the Voice for years, becoming one of the strongest Bene Gesserit and a dangerous warrior whenever she can speak out loud, as evidenced in the film.

The Voice’s Impact On The Dune Plot

The Voice Is A Symbol Of Power That Can Be Abused

Jessica looks at Leto while he stares in the distance in Dune.

While the Voice is shown in the first movie to be the thing that saves Paul and Jessica, it is also linked to the story’s theme about the corruption of ultimate power. Even though the Kwisatz Haderach augury feels like a typical chosen one prophecy, it represents the Bene Gesserit’s successful attempts to breed a powerful male human capable of accessing all the memories of ancient Bene Gesserit members.

This allows them to evolve rapidly and unlock abilities such as predicting the future, uniting the people against the galactic power that oppresses them, and utilizing the Voiuce which itself can be a tool of oppression. The Voice has the potential to interfere directly in Dune‘s politics.

In the first Dune book, Jessica considered using the Voice on her husband Duke Leto multiple times to ensure the safety of House Artreides. Although the Voice offers plenty of opportunities, its use is directly linked to the values of the Bene Gesserit, which prevents Jessica from interfering recklessly in politics and breaking the Duke’s trust.

The threat of the Voice forces enemies to adapt to this power, which causes Baron Harkonnen to assign deaf guards to Jessica and the High Houses to develop Cones of Silence, an intelligent device controlled by electronic impulses that disrupt the sound of the human voice, countering the Voice effect.


Dune the big-screen adaptation of Frank Herbert’s seminal bestseller of the same name. A mythic and emotionally charged hero’s journey, Dune tells the story of Paul Atreides, a brilliant and gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the universe to ensure the future of his family and his people. As malevolent forces explode into conflict over the planet’s exclusive supply of the most precious resource in existence—a commodity capable of unlocking humanity’s greatest potential—only those who can conquer their fear will survive.

Release Date
October 22, 2021

Dave Bautista , Rebecca Ferguson , Sharon Duncan-Brewster , Jason Momoa , David Dastmalchian , Stephen McKinley Henderson , Stellan Skarsgård , Charlotte Rampling , Chang Chen , Oscar Isaac , Zendaya , Javier Bardem , Timothee Chalamet , Josh Brolin

155 minutes

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