Monday, October 26, 2009

BEELZEBUB AKA "THE LORD OF THE FLIES"




"The title is said to be a reference to the Hebrew name of Beelzebub (בעל זבוב, Ba’al-zvuv, “god of the fly”, “host of the fly”, or literally “Lord of Flies”), a name sometimes used as a synonym for Satan. The title of the book, in turn, has itself become a metaphor for a power struggle in a chaotic situation."

A CHAOTIC SITUATION:  Living on an island can sometimes leave you with a condition called "Island Fever" which I am currently suffering from.  I long for civilization and the streets of Manhattan.  Sometimes I have pondered, what would happen with all this H1N1 or some other scary disease (maybe a zombie type) broke out and we were stuck here in the middle of the Pacific.  Things would get downright hairy super fast!  Of course there would be no imports so the residents would have to survive off the land.  Now, for native Hawaiians this probably wouldn't be that big of a deal.  Most Hawaiians know all the edible fish, fruits, vegetables etc.  And, of course there are wild boar on the island just like in "Lord of The Flies".  Things would get primitive pretty quick and different "camps" would be established as to who had access to what.  There are more components to this scenario not being a native Hawaiian but I can't get into that!

People come in all varieties and some are more prone to the democratic process, organization, and logic (Ralph, Piggy and Simon).  Others are more prone to survival of the fittest (Jack Merridew & Co.).  I say, a person needs a certain balance of each.  After all, you can have a 160 IQ and not a lick of street smarts.  If my family was hungry I'd definitely do in a pig or two without losing much sleep.  The chaos isn't in the hunting; it's in the social organization of people. Brawn over brains seems to prevail in these types of survival circumstances.  It's a wonder that we're as civilized as we are, but of course all one has to do  is turn on the news for that warm and fuzzy feeling to go away.  
There have been many debates and books on this topic, social/political order and the nature of man,  (Animal Farm, etc).  I'm having a hard go of it trying to get into this book (again, one I read in high school) because it isn't a novel concept in 2009 like it was during the "Cold War".  And, when I was a teacher in Maine, I taught at the school that serviced all the incarcerated (lock downed) kids in the state of Maine.  It was "Lord Of The Flies" everyday in that place.  I'm "flied" out! 






3 comments:

David Wagner said...

Guess I should have recommended something else... sorry...

SophiesMark said...

It has been a long time since I have re-read Lord of the Flies, must visit it again.

Cara Powers said...

Oh yeah, the houli's would get starved off the island if not outright killed.