Lord of the Flies Essay

Essay by DrpandaferHigh School, 11th gradeA, November 2014

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Danielle Jourdan

Mr. Gwardinski

CP English 11 B

11 April 2014

The Circle of Hobbesian Life

Imagine the tribulations and terror that mankind would face if there ever came a time when there was no government to keep law and order. Governmental institutions are responsible for overseeing and implementing public policies for the protection of society. The natural state of man reveals the underlying reasons of why man had to establish political societies. If there was no legal agency making laws and carrying out punishments, each man would be forced to carry out retaliation at his own discretion. Thomas Hobbes and Jean Jacques Rousseau, two political philosophers, have differing opinions on the natural state of man. Hobbes believes that man needed some type of governmental institution for self-protection because man's natural state is miserable and brutal. According to Hobbes, everyone in the state of nature is free to act as they wish and may pose a risk to another individual's existence and survival.

On the other hand, Rousseau considers human nature good until society corrupts human behavior. However, Hobbes has a more practical theory of man's natural state as regards to the formation of political societies.

In the Lord of the Flies, Golding portrays the deserted island as a place where the abandoned boys have a choice between returning to a pre-civilized state of humanity or placing social order upon the group. The situation resembles a Hobbesian principle by throwing the children almost fully into a state of nature. Ralph's power on the island resembles a monarchy. He is a natural leader, a quality that the other boys immediately recognize when they vote for him to be chief. Jack believes that he should assume the role automatically, while Ralph, who is reluctant to accept leadership, achieves it through...