"The Lords of Discipline": Values and Problems in Carolina Military Institute

Essay by havokmaster2000High School, 11th gradeA+, January 2006

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In the novel "The Lords of Discipline" by Pat Conroy, the problems and values in the Carolina Military Institute reflect the tainted values of Charleston, South Carolina. Annie Kate and the Carolina Military Institute are extremely similar to each other in many ways. Both are things in the town and they are beautiful and impressive on the outside. However, both Annie Kate and the Institute have internal conflicts that are hidden and kept secret until Will discovers them.

Annie Kate, a resident of the houses "South of Broad", is beautiful on the outside, but has serious internal conflicts on the inside. When Will first met Annie Kate, it was midnight in Charleston and Will was going to his car only to find a strange note on his windshield. He glances around and finds Annie Kate with sunglasses and an overcoat on. A few days later Will saw the true beauty of Annie Kate in the garden of her mansion.

"She removed her scarf and her long, blonde hair fell luxuriantly to her shoulders...She took off her sunglasses and I saw her eyes for the first time. They were blue, shining, and lovely" (107).

Annie Kate has a luxurious house and appears to have a lot of money, but she also has internal problems that she cannot escape. Annie Kate's mother, Mrs. Gervais, has run out of money and wants Annie Kate to marry a rich boy so that they can become rich again through the marriage. Annie Kate had become pregnant over the summer and ruined the plans her mother had made for her. The father of the baby would not marry Annie Kate and she is forced to deal with it herself.

The Institute from the outside is a "stolid, immovable object" (9) and is...