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Competence Awakens the Beast Within

Essay by   •  November 20, 2013  •  Essay  •  1,382 Words (6 Pages)  •  1,391 Views

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Lost, lost at sea, lost in their own minds, lost even in their own bodies; a group of young boys evacuated from London, England(due to a nuclear war) are faced with a dilemma when their plane crashes leaving them stranded on a tropical paradise with no parents and no rules. They have only the call of the wilderness to respond to. As reality creeps in, the tropical paradise becomes an isolated island. The boys must work together to fight fear off the island which in the end, takes a turn for the worst. Will they be able to cope? Or will they fend for themselves even if it means disregarding the domesticated way of living. The events that had taken place capture the loss of civility and building savagery among the desolate-looking but competent young boys.

In the beginning, a group of young boys are brought together by a foreign object; a conch. For example Jack did this "He laid the conch against his lips, took a deep breath band blew once more" (17). This conch symbolizes many things as the story progresses and decays; it is authentically the structure of this story and helps the boys form a mini-civilization known and familiar to them. These boys, who had no recollection of the crash they were involved in and who were complete strangers with the exception of the choir boys, came together by the sound of the conch. It exemplifies harmony, the desire for organization, for rules, for a civil way of living and merely for comfort and something known to them. These boys only know one way of living and that's with rules; the conch acts as structure and kind of like the government body within the island. They even had a democratic vote to determine who was fit to be leader, and Ralph was chosen. With this, they were able to conduct a similar way of living the way they had before. The boys made huts, built fires, and had different groups to look after each task. The turning point in which they boys had conflict is when Jack, who was in charge of the fire (chief of hunters) had disobeyed Ralph, the chief with the conch. Some of their structure begins to break because they had missed opportunity of rescue due to the fact that the fire was left unattended and went out. Most of the choir boys and Jack began to lose their morals and what was most important for survival for everyone, in a way they became selfish and revolved their time around solely hunting. The boys' innocence and motive to follow the rules gave off the impression that they were prepared and could compile a plan for rescue without anything going off track which as things decomposed, chaos erupted on the island.

Fear is one of many prominent themes in this book and marks the turning point of the soon to be perished plan of the boys. Throughout the whole story, in every chapter, fear is evident in many different ways. In the beginning, the boys mutually feared being alone and away from what they are used to. Everything on the island is unfamiliar to them and as the story progresses; they begin to fear not only the island but themselves. Many incidents of fear include; fear of consequence, fear of darkness and towards the end, fear of capability. During the dawn of the story, the boys enter the island with a civil mindset and lack of knowledge of the outside world. They are very innocent and routine to following and obeying rules in an organized fashion and fear breaking rules. As they later realize they cannot survive this easily, the boys become more experienced and recognize their surroundings and their resources to aid them in survival and dismiss their speculation of consequence. Although not all of the boys may admit it, especially not the older boys, they are all of afraid of the darkness in many ways. They believe that a beastie lurks in darkness and the boys, some more collected than others, are all scared. "He said he saw the beastie. It

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