Lord of the Flies Lord of the Flies discussion

If there would be girls

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message 1: by Klain (last edited Jun 07, 2018 01:38PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Klain Do you think the book would end the same if there were girls? (Or at least as a main character because we don't know if the littluns are only boys)

Debra Medina They are all boys. The plane was flying them either to or home from boarding schools in England. I used to feel similarly if there were girls, but I recently read Naomi Alderman's "The Power" and it has made me wonder if human nature is simply violent and brutal, as opposed to male nature vs. female nature.

Monty J Heying Klain wrote: "Do you think the book would end the same if there were girls? (Or at least as a main character because we don't know if the littluns are only boys)"

The book is an allegorical fable, a mental exercise. It was never meant to represent realism except to show the pessimistic view of what was possible if kids ran amok.

Gender doesn't enter into the equation. It's a hyopthetical set of circumstances and characters that could just as easily been females as males.

In my professional experience, women/girls are no different than men/boys. Both genders are capable of savagery in the right circumstances. This is all Golding was saying to humanity: don't set your expectations too high because under the right circumstances people are capable of anything.

So "Teach Your Children Well."

Arttu Hakala I have to admit I read this book a while ago so I don't have all the details fresh in my memory. However as time goes on I've noticed that I've started to think differently of the book.

Originally I percieved it as a somewhat cynical story of human nature and how all of us are capable of evil under extreme circumstances. I still believe in that message atleast somewhat but I do think there is more there to look at.

The characters in the book are priviliged boys (mainly white boys if I remember correctly). And quite honestly wether the author intended this or not, I do think the class status and the privilige these boys hold in society affects hugely how they act in the story. In that sense I do see elements of critisism of our society and the way priviliged rich boys tend to be brought up (the culture of toxic masculinity etc etc) in the story of this book.

Had the characters in the book's scenario been women or minorities or otherwise opressed and less fortunate individuals, I do think the story would have turned out differently. Obviously this is just speculation and the story is fictional so my theories are just my own. Truthfully I don't think the author had intended this and I do feel like I'm projecting some modern ideas on this book that was written quite a while ago.

I don't necessary see the story of this book as a universal story of human nature, but it's just my personal view.

message 5: by Stratospherus (last edited Dec 06, 2018 08:50PM) (new)

Stratospherus I disagree here. As I pointed on other topic, well, I gotta start with a joke I heard (or read). If women are ruling the planet, there wouldn't be any wars, but half of the planet wouldn't speak with the other half and there'll be lot jealousy. What I admire here, is that the author chose very thought provoking subject matter and was brave enough to deal with it, in explicit manner. This' what most humans today put aside or overlooking, this is humanity at it worst. Male humanity.
Women can commit violent acts, but violence is something that is more common with men. Men since young age, are built to be physical, they are competitive and combative. And that's just part of the biology. Alpha leader or alpha male. Since dawn of time, it was men who want to conflict with the other groups, either for food or territory. Women are more pacifist and more emotional. And not bloodthirsty as we are led to believe. That's primal difference between males and the opposite gender.

Shawn I have to admit that it has been many, many years since I've read this book but I never forgot it. I have even recommended it to several adolescents over the years. While there are differences in males and females and how they handle events, this book still comes down to basic survival instincts. Even in an all female environment, there will still be those that rise to the top and females can be fierce when it comes to survival. It's not out of the realm of possibility that the outcome would still be the same.

Stephen McCarthy Like others it has been too many years since I read this book.

I always remember it as more about the conflict arising from conformist v individual or mob rule v personal morality. The challenge set to the reader is what would you do in the same situation. I read it as an adolescent so it was relevant at the time.

I think in that sense the gender of the children is not overly important. I am sure an adolescent girl could find common cause with the characters and the basic driving forces in the story of survival are pertinent to both genders.

In the modern world we have this 'stranded' scenario recreated through various reality TV programmes.
It is curious to observe that the practical nature of females in terms of pure survival seems to allow them to manage violence better, albeit no person has been harmed only some misfortunate animals. Some of the males seem incapable when it comes down to it.

I think the book also feeds our need to establish order through the conch and rules etc and by extension our latent propensity for disorder in the ultimate collapse of the society before they are rescued.

As others have said the book is of its time but still able to kindle debate

Dave I last read this book almost 20 years ago, but when I did something struck me about it. While there are only boys amongst the survivors of the plane crash, the island is full of feminine imagery. The pigs are all referred to as sows, the conch is a yonic symbol, and even the island is shaped, as I remember reading the description, like a vagina. Thus, as the boys wield their power and destruction over the island, and the feminine, they are destroying themselves. Even Piggy and Simon seem to have the most feminine of qualities of any of the boys (Piggy I believe even often references female relatives).

I feel there was more to my theory, but this is what I remember some 20 years later.

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