Lord Of The Flies Rousseau Analysis

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Michelle Li Mr. Carpenter Literature / Period 3 8 October 2014 Human Nature Jean Jacques Rousseau believed that “our greatest evil flows from ourselves.” Are humans born with morality, or does society influence it? In Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, a group of stranded small boys develop their own civilization on an island with no adult supervision. While Golding’s assertion that society leads to corruption is similar to Jean Jacques Rousseau, his view that humans are innately evil refutes the philosopher’s belief, as shown in the boys’ overwhelming hunger for authority and savagery. The eighteenth century philosopher, Jean Jacques Rousseau, wrote The Social Contract and influenced the United States Constitution. He believed that "a…show more content…
Roger, a full barbarian, has a "stick sharpened at both ends" (198) preparing to kill Ralph, but “Ralph fumble[s] to hold his spear so that it was point foremost; and now he s[ees] that the stick was sharpened at both ends” (198). Ralph needs just a defense weapon in order to survive, but having the ability to kill on both ends makes his weapon powerful, with equal playing field as Roger. Being exposed to the savagery for so long influences his identity to into developing a cruel behavior. Roger's target is Ralph because not only does he want get revenge and stop Ralph from climbing the social class ladder, but ultimately he wants to gain authority from Jack. The other boys will want to side to the strong in order to survive and feel protected. Humans are innately self-interested in the required necessities, provided by nature, to survive, such as water, food, and shelter, but as society advances, people's desires increase and they are never satisfied with what they have. A society ruled by an absolute monarch creates greedy individuals who will devise unmoral plans to attain power for others, thus corrupting one's innocence and state of…show more content…
People are never satisfied with what they have in a society with unlimited social interaction between humans and material progress, and this has been prominent throughout the two generations of people. Just before Ralph is about to lose to the man hunt, an officer appears and offers to rescue the savages "on the trim cruiser in the distance” (Golding 202). The officer is to save them on a war ship, but the destination is unknown. However, the world beyond the small island is a more brutal conflict. Golding zooms out of the small island into an overall picture of the real world, and uses the word “distance” to show how far away from civilized both worlds are in. He uses the officer to represent adults who are already experiencing evil before the boys on the island, hence humans are born corrupt. Furthermore, in Simon's encounter with the Lord of the Flies, the beast tells him "'You knew, didn't you? I'm a part of you?'" (143). The theory that the beast is not a fictional character is later confirmed when Simon discovers a human being, or specifically a dead parachutist, in the rocks, not a beast. The desire for savagery is within every human being, including those who stick strongly to their ethics. Golding suggests that there is a constant battle between moralities because everyone is capable of being

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