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What things bother Ralph most about the breakdown of order on the island? What is the...

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oinkmooquack | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 21, 2008 at 12:07 PM via web

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What things bother Ralph most about the breakdown of order on the island? What is the reason for the breakdown?

I was told to really think about it, but I just needed help. Thanks

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ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted November 21, 2008 at 12:56 PM (Answer #1)

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Remember at the beginning of the novel Ralph is described as the "fair haired" boy" "sunny and decent, sensible and considerate.",.  Ralph is the "good guy."  His father is an officer in the Royal Navy.  This indicates to me that Ralph's life before the "island experience" was one of order.  He has been raised to strongly believe in honor, integrity, and doing what is right. Yet, Ralph lacks the "charisma and strategic skills to get the other boys to recognize what the conch represents—order, authority, dialogue, democracy." The break-down of the order on the island occurs because Jack becomes more savage as time passes "he can be a wily strategist. In other ways, however, Jack is careless and destructive, as when he accidentally steps on Piggy's glasses and breaks a lens.."  He begins to ignore the rules.  An example of this is when he lets the fire die to go off and hunt.  Jack pursuades many of the other boys to follow his lead.  He is intimidating and he scares most of the boys.  Ralph believes in doing the responsible thing because it is the right thing to do.  Yet, more and more of the order disappears because Jack becomes stronger and stronger.

"Golding himself has said that the writing of Lord of the Files was an attempt to trace the defects of society back to the defects of human nature."

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