What is the effect of how the setting is established in "The Destructors"?

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litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

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The story is set after World War II in England.  This was a time of great destruction for the country, and the story plays with that idea to create a theme of universal apathy.

“The Destructors” is a story about the dark side of human nature that is simply a part of all of us.  It takes place in the aftermath of a terrible time in our history—World War II.  The gang of teenagers grew up during and directly after the war, and were therefore highly impacted by it.

From the very beginning, the setting is introduced in a meaningful way.

The gang met every morning in an impromptu car-park, the site of the last bomb of the first blitz.

This establishes the destruction of the city and its lasting effect on the landscape, as well as the everyday influence on the teens.

The setting is established with detailed imagery.

One moment the house had stood there with such dignity between the bomb sites like a man in a top hat, and then, bang, crash, there wasn’t anything left—not anything.

The effect of this imagery is to create a world that the reader can picture.  The aftermath of the destruction and chaos surrounding the blitz is an important backdrop to the story, and the description helps sell it.

kittygirl86 | Student

The story has been set in the year 1954, a few years after the second world war II. He's shown us that after the war Great Britain was low and that many people had lost their jobs. The bombing had destroyed a lot of houses and people were homeless.There was fear everywhere, people were locked up inside their homes.

The chaotic conditions of the city had a negative effect on the children. Seeing the destruction, it effected their innocence. This lead to the formations of gangs and then the kids went into crime.