Lord of the Flies - "We've got to have rules and obey them. After all, we're not savages", Page 42, Chapter 2. Discuss Jack's statement in the light of events if Chapters 1 - 5.
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Palvinder Mann 10G Engish Mrs.Marshall 1st October 2004 Essay Question: "We've got to have rules and obey them. After all, we're not savages", Page 42, Chapter 2. Discuss Jack's statement in the light of events if Chapters 1 - 5. This particular statement seems to be contradicted and supported during various parts of the story. When Jack first makes this statement, he is not aware of what lies in their future, and how they will take their first steps into savagery in order to satisfy their need to survive on the island upon which darkness and doubt has descended after the ecstasy of freedom had been spent. In chapter 1, the boys are excited about their freedom, especially since there are no adults to tell them what to do. But their old ways somehow make them continue to adhere to their civilised ways and they quickly elect a leader (Ralph) and decide what should be done. Obviously, the boys still display some of their child-like qualities, for example when Ralph was teasing Piggy about his name. But Ralph is the boy who shows the qualities of a leader. He manages to spread peace and order among the boys, and compromises with Jack, who wanted to be the leader.
But the feeling of unrest is still induced. Jack tries to console the child by saying that he will kill the creature, much to the annoyance of Ralph, who wants to make it clear that there is no "beastie". The subject turns to their rescue. It is decided that they will be rescued, and so they formulate a plan. Ralph suggests they construct a fire, but then Jack rushes off with the other boys, caught up in the excitement of building a fire. Jack snatches Piggy's glasses to light the fire. This is quite cruel, a s Piggy's sight is a disability to him, and without his glasses he can't see. In their excitement, the group don't notice the disappearance of one of the smaller kids. Piggy points this out. It is assumed that he was killed in the blaze, which, with lack of attention, had spread and burnt a part of the island. Jack's statement is not thoroughly contradicted here, but it gives weak support. Chapter 3 sees the failed attempt to bring sustenance and shelter to the island. Jack attempts to get his first kill, but it escapes his grasp.
The killing excites all the hunters. They chanted, "Kill the pig. Cut her throat. Spill her blood". This is a clear sign of savagery. Jack is angered by Ralph, and as he can't take this out on him, he takes it out instead on Piggy, who he punches twice, breaking his glasses. Ralph makes him apologise, but it seems their friendship is over, and Ralph is beginning to form a friendship with Piggy. Chapter 5 is mainly based on a meeting. Ralph, who hopes to address some points of his concern, calls this meeting. Firstly Ralph talks about how the group are not working hard enough to contribute to the well-being of their new lifestyle. Then he talks about how they are going about thins in an uncivilised way. For example, they are not using the indicated places as toilets, but they are doing it everywhere. Then he talks about the idea of the "beastie". The small kids had been having nightmares. It is suggested that they are scared of each other, or a ghost, or a sea-creature. The meeting does not go as planned; it breaks up leaving Ralph, Piggy and Simon behind, seemingly the only sane ones left. By now Jack's statement is completely contradicted; the boys have left their civilised ways and turned into savages.
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