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The Development of Fa in The Inheritors

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The Development Of Fa Consider a character who develops in the novel, and with detailed reference to style and themes, explain the development and its significance. 'The Inheritors' by William Golding explores the elimination of the Neanderthals by the homosapiens. The novel follows the two survivors, Lok and Fa, both pure of heart yet both led into corruption by the new world they have been lured into. While Lok cannot comprehend, Fa begins to with the progression of the novel, thus having to be relied upon to lead them to salvation. This provokes her character development; one that contrasts both to the Neanderthals and to the 'New People', and one that helps convey the novel's deeper significance. In this essay I shall explore this development and explain its significance to the novel. The initial impression of Fa conveys her simple and primitive thought patterns. Her incomprehension of 'the log has gone away' conveys how she trusts nature, and cannot understand why it would deceive or confuse her in this way. Yet even in the initial stages of the novel, the fact that she has a more intellectual awareness than Lok is conveyed. 'She looked at him accusingly' suggests that even though it isn't possible Lok could have removed the Log, she has enough basic understanding to comprehend that somebody did, which contrasts to Lok's idea that the Log had moved itself. ...read more.


An arrow has been fired at him by the New People, and whilst he sees this merely as a 'gift', Fa recognises that it is a weapon, and that the New People intended to hurt him. 'Give the twig back!' she cries with this realisation, but Lok is still bewildered. 'Throw it now!' she pleads, desperate for him to realise too. However he still sees it as harmless, showing that however innocent Lok may be he is far more naive than Fa. Fa grows increasingly impatient with him, desperate for him to see what she sees, so much so that her exasperation becomes physical 'she took him by both shoulders and shook him'. 'The new people have many pictures' she claims, showing her vague insight into the New People's mindset and marking her ability to understand their different ways of life. However Fa claims 'I have many pictures too' highlighting her desperation to take control of the situation, as she knows Lok is not capable. Her anger at him is becoming more and more 'fierce', and the conversation comes to a climax as she cries 'Lok has no pictures in his head'. At once there is a great change of mood; it is now very 'solemn' and as 'Lok felt himself diminish', he too has realised Fa's superiority. ...read more.


The novel sees her character progress from a typical member of the Neanderthal community to the one with all the power. It is this power which becomes her greatest asset, as well as evoking her downfall, as she is influenced by the homosapiens. The initial changes seen are ones where her best intention is to protect her community, but by the end of the novel, Fa struggles with her motivation and succumbs to the ways of the new people, which suggests that such innocent values are not welcome in this new world where there is no trust. To conclude, the character of Fa develops significantly throughout the novel, and this enables us to gain an understanding of the Neanderthal community in comparison to that of the 'New People's. Fa develops from a character that cannot establish conclusions to the one who is relied upon to make them. Though it can be argued that Fa represents the innocence of the Neanderthals, the fact that she is forced to change and is eventually corrupted highlights that their values of trust and respect cannot withstand a world of fear and evil. Her development is significant because it shows how her character contrasts so greatly to the homosapien's prejudices, and this encourages the reader to rethink their own values, as it is the homosapiens that we as humans can relate to the most, and this is the novel's deeper significance. ...read more.

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