The Destructors Theme Of Selfishness

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Selfish? Selfish. Prince Prospero and Old Misery were "dethroned" in "Masque of Red Death" and "The Destructors" because of their selfishness, however subtle or unsubtle. People can't focus on their own problems and expect to escape the problems that surround , it will always come back to them until the problem is addressed. In Graham Greene's "The Destructors", the boys attack Old Misery because of his selfishness; even though the boys do not know that to be the reason themselves because it is so subtle. T has just arrived late to the meeting when the others ask him where he was. He told them he was at Old Misery's and he is now describing the house: "'It’s a beautiful house […] It’s got a staircase two hundred years old like a corkscrew. Nothing holds it up.’ [Blackie asks,]…show more content…
Does it float?’ [Trevor replies,] ‘It’s to do with opposite forces, Old Misery said’” (Greene 3-4). The only Old Misery invited T into his house was to show it off. Old Misery put so much work into making his own property look good, even with all of the poverty and destruction around him. He failed to recognize, or care about , the state of his neighbors' properties. His obsession with his own self value and worth is showed later on when the boys are inside the house: "Smash all the china and glass and bottles you can lay a hold of [...] Tear up any papers you find and smash all the ornaments" (Greene 8). Greene is showing the reader in a subtle way that Old Misery surrounds himself with luxury items. He talks about the china and ornaments, neither of which are necessities. They are just luxury goods with which Old Misery has decided to surround himself with in the midst of all the destruction and struggling that is going on outside of his

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