"Can laws and rules actually set us free by keeping us safe and orderly?" Explain how this question relates to The Lord of the Flies and analyze how this concept/idea is proven to be true or not...

"Can laws and rules actually set us free by keeping us safe and orderly?" Explain how this question relates to The Lord of the Flies and analyze how this concept/idea is proven to be true or not true throughout the novel. 

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readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There will inevitably be various opinions. Here are my thoughts:

Some will argue that laws do, in fact, keep people safe and make our lives meaningful. Before the plane crash, the boys were living in society and things worked well enough, even though there was a war raging on.  When their plane crashed, there was still some order. To be sure the boys had to make their own laws, such as one that stated only the one who held the conch could speak, but the laws did keep the boys safe for a time.

As the story progressed, the conch broke. The breaking was a symbol of the bestial side of humanity. When human passions got the best of the boys, things began to fall apart. Among the boys, especially Jack, there was a passion for hunting. This passion caused the tragic deaths of Piggy and Simon. 

In the end, laws are good and can help, but we must never underestimate the depravity in the human heart. Even among boys, lawlessness runs the show at the end. No one is strong enough to enforce the laws, let alone to live by them.

The key point comes in chapter 8 of the book. 

“There isn’t anyone to help you. Only me. And I’m the Beast. . . . Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill! . . . You knew, didn’t you? I’m part of you? Close, close, close! I’m the reason why it’s no go? Why things are the way they are?”

In conclusion, no one can get rid of the beast within. 

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Lord of the Flies

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