Rousseau Lord Of The Flies Quote Analysis

752 Words4 Pages
According to Rousseau, the best form of government is a direct democracy (Robison), but since Ralph fails to establish this form of government, the result is the boys falling into corruption and total chaos. Rousseau believes that civil society causes humans to become corrupt. His philosophy is centered upon the idea of “the general will,” which reflects society’s interest in a common good (Younkins). But individual desires can conflict with the general will, and civil society can actually damage the desire for a common good (Bertram). The general will in Lord of the Flies is the need to build shelters, establish a civilization, and most importantly keep the fire going with the ultimate purpose of rescue. However, the boys stop caring about these goals and Ralph is not able to unite them.…show more content…
Ralph putting his foot down and being stricter, “because [he’s] chief,” just causes them to disagree with him more. Because Ralph’s attempt at forming a democracy fails, he tries to be more controlling, but this just further causes the boys to disobey him and forget about the goals that are the most important for them all. Because Ralph is not able to successfully establish a direct democracy or convince the boys to be interested in the common good, as Rousseau believes is necessary for a functional society, the result is that Jack seizes power to form his own tribe of savagery, the boys fall into corruption, and the general will is completely lost.
Thomas Hobbes’ view on human nature is more pessimistic, arguing that humans are intrinsically evil and should allow strong governments to keep them from descending into violence (Robison), a view that seems to mirror Goulding’s. Because the boys eventually stop accepting Ralph as their leader, the power-hungry Jack takes over and the island falls into a state of chaos. Hobbes believes that in a natural state without a government, humans are selfish, impulsive beings in a constant civil war. The solution is for
Open Document