Lord Of The Flies- -The Deterioration Of Law And Order Essay, Research Paper
Rousseau believed that civilization corrupts the essential innocence and goodness of man. The noble savage in his own natural habitat will rid himself of societies evils. But that is not what happens in Lord of the Flies. In Fact, Without society keeping him in line, man will revert back to his most primal state, and blur the line between animals and humans
From the calling of the first meeting and all along up to the final hunt for Ralph the sense of order and respect is gradually declining among the boys. In the beginning everybody listens to what everybody has to say, and they try to build a civilized society on the island. The boys had obviously gotten a pretty strict upbringing both at home and at school. All of them have a definite view of what is right and what is wrong.
We see this even in Jack, as he cannot kill the first pig they meet. At first they are able to use this sense, and keep their traditional standards also on the island. They elect a leader democratically, and by popular vote they start deciding what has to be done. They have rules for the meetings and they make laws for what is allowed and what is not. We ll have rules! he cried excitedly. Lots of rules! Then when anyone breaks em 33
The problem comes when the boys start realizing that there is no one there to control them. There are no adults there to make them toil and sweat if they do not want to. The boys realize that swimming and eating fruit all day is more fun, than laying the foundation for a fair and safe society where everybody works for the benefit of the whole group.
The main symbol that represents the law and order on the island is the conch shell. It is with this Ralph calls all the meetings and all of the other boys seem to respect this. Anyone who holds it has the right to be heard. Without this, nobody would probably ever have listened to any of Piggy s intelligent suggestions. There would have been no fire, no shelters and no assigned place for lavatory use.
As the respect for the conch disappears, so does the law and order on the island. This hits rock bottom as Piggy is killed and the conch is crushed with him. There is no longer any respect for Old World rules left on the island.
I m not going to play any longer. Not with you.
Most of the boys were looking down now, at the grass or at their feet. Jack cleared his thought again.
I m not going to be a part of Ralph s lot– 127
And Jack leaves Ralph, the symbol of democracy, to find start his own band of savages. These actions by Jack and some of the other boys would suggest that society is the only thing keeping man in line, and without society, man would return to his most primal state.
However, There is more than one way to interpret this book. I personally think that Society simultaneously creates and suppresses the feelings and urges we like to associate with animals. Then, when put in an environment where society no longer exists, man would release what society had created and become, in many ways, worse than animals. That just demonstrates the short way from civilization to savagery.