Madness in Elie Wiesel’s Night, and William Golding’s Lord of the Flies

1969 Words 8 Pages
Mankind has struggled throughout eternity, battling the demons that come from the very depths of the soul. Elie Wiesel’s novel, Night, and William Golding’s novel, Lord of the Flies show how quickly humans can descend into chaos and savagery. When dehumanization presents itself in unruly civilizations, humans turn into more primitive beings. The process of dehumanization begins through a loss of morals, knowledge, and innocence. The main characters in both novels find themselves in the eternal battle of good versus evil. Morals guide people to behave in a civilized manner; dehumanization shows itself when people abandon their morals and ethics. Dehumanization, by definition, “is one of the central processes in the …show more content…
The son left his father for dead, demonstrating a complete loss of morals. During the Holocaust, people demonstrate a loss of morals over little things. Guards threw bread into the wagon with starving prisoners. The emaciated, starving prisoners “were hurling themselves against each other, trampling, tearing at and mauling each other. Beasts of prey unleashed, animal hate in their eyes. An extraordinary vitality possessed them, sharpening their teeth and nails” (101). The prisoners not only show a loss of morals, but become animal-like savages in the process. A son almost kills his own father over another piece of bread. The father cries out: “Meir, my little Mier! Don’t you recognize me….you’re killing your own father….I have bread…for you too….for you too” (101). The old man “mumbled something, groaned, and died. Nobody cared. His son searched him, took the crust of bread and began to devour it.” (101). The son not only demonstrates a complete lack of morals, but also becomes animal- like in the process. The men fighting over small amounts of food lose themselves, showing dehumanization at its finest. A group of people without a strong, moral leader will find themselves being dehumanized. Lord of the Flies shows how a lack of morals in a leader can speed up the process of dehumanization. Jack, who wants to rule over all the boys, shows a lack of morals. Jack and his group turn into primal savages that kill to stay in power. The
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