William Golding's Perception of Mankind
It is evident that as the article, “Everyone is a Potential Torturer,” by Gaia Vince, states, every person on Earth has the potential to perform acts of evil. This is my belief as well. I believe that this is ultimately what William Golding feels to be true. His intention in writing Lord of the Flies seems evident; to make a statement that humans of all ages are capable of evil given the right set of circumstances. However, it is clear from both Vince’s and Golding’s point of view, that people only perform acts of evil when other detrimental factors are in play. For example, a person who was frequently abused as a child and never received help would fit the criteria of a mentally unstable human being.
A mentally unstable human being’s inhibitions are lowered. His conscience is a small voice in his mind, and the darkness within him is perhaps heightened due to his traumatic past. Under the right conditions, human beings are liable to succumb to their inner demons and base temptations. As Dr. Ian Robbins believes, “acts of torture can be committed by almost everyone-not just psychopaths.
” While it is true that most extreme evil-doers in this world, such as those who have committed murder and rape, are indeed plagued by a mental disorder, there are certain people that are simply overcome with their demons and are haunted by their past which then compels them when under extreme emotional or physical duress, to perform immoral or violent acts. This is the greatest defect in human nature. All human beings have the capability for evil, and this is their greatest flaw. However, when humans are unable to overcome their primal instincts, chaos ensues. Therefore, Golding’s book exhibits his belief that under extreme conditions, such as being deserted on an uninhabited island, humans will revert back to their primal impulses by killing, as well as to living amid anarchy.