What are some parallels between Lord of the Flies, Brave New World, and Fahrenheit 451?

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All three of these dystopian novels are interested in answering the same questions: what is the nature of government, power, and civilization? Each of these questions is explored through the themes of these novels:

Do we live in a utopia or an authoritarian regime?

Each novel presents a utopian opportunity...

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All three of these dystopian novels are interested in answering the same questions: what is the nature of government, power, and civilization? Each of these questions is explored through the themes of these novels:

Do we live in a utopia or an authoritarian regime?

Each novel presents a utopian opportunity which is replaced by (or revealed to be) an authoritarian dictatorship. In Lord of the Flies, the idyllic island community begins with a democratic election and ends with the island’s self-appointed dictator (Jack) ordering the executions of enemies of the state. Brave New World’s utopia allows its citizens to live recreationally, but Mustapha Mond and John understand that people are actually controlled by the government through their pleasures. Fahrenheit 451 similarly presents a utopia of entertainment through television, but Montag’s profession is evidence enough that there is a government ban on free thought.

Does man naturally prefer to be a leader or a subject?

All three novels deal with power and subjugation, and while there are individuals who strongly desire power and control (Jack, Mond, Beatty), their foils would prefer to be subjects. Each protagonist encounters an individual who does not mind being controlled or would prefer to be ignorant than stand up to the powers that be. In Lord of the Flies, the twins, SamnEric, nearly hold out until the end but inevitably prefer to stick with whatever the main tribe is doing. Brave New World presents hosts of individuals on multiple levels who are content consuming their soma, and Farenheit 451 features Mildred, plugging her ears with her seashells and investing her time in television rather than reality.

What makes man civilized and what makes him a savage?

Each text presents an image of a civilized man and a savage, leaving it to the reader to determine which is which. Piggy attempts to maintain civilized practices but is constantly overruled by Jack. John has been raised in the wilderness without Bernard’s technology, but is well-versed in Shakespeare. Clarisse does not fit into the rest of society, while Mildred is its perfect housewife.

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Some parallels you may wish to consider include:

1. All three novels have a single protagonist who struggles against authoritarion oppressor(s) who wish to control and dictate what goes on in the civilization.

2. They are each a kind of dystopian or utopian society (depending on your perspecetive, of course). If you love control and order, then you'd love BNW and 451's society.

3. The main protagonist in each is male.

4. Each of the novels presents a struggle for power.

5. Each of the novels present a struggle for knowledge.

6. Each novel presents an allegory for elements in our own world.

7. They are all fine examples of how isolation and alienation occur.

Compare and contrast the themes. There's plenty more mining there.

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