BBC and LoF Comparative Analysis: Childhood 

If I had to choose two books to read, it wouldn’t be these two. Now, me typing this in my paper for the teacher that assigned both books to me, probably not the smartest idea. As much as I really don’t like to read, especially books we are forced to put our time into, these books gave me something out of them. They gave me sleepless nights, headaches, lots of tears, and they showed me how bad I am at time management. But the main thing both of these books taught me is how the boys in Lord of the Flies and Bless the Beast and Children got stripped from their innocence as children.

In Lord of the Flies, the boys quickly lost their innocence during their time on the island. They even probably lost their pureness while they experienced deaths as well. These boys were instantly put into positions where they had no choice but to grow up, and they needed to learn to do it quick. All the boys were put into situations that were very traumatic that forced them to learn how to cope with tough situations, how to step up to the plate, and how to survive. In tough times like these, usually an adult would help and lead the pack. But since these kids had to learn to be a leader, they had to take matters into their own hands. They didn’t get to just sit back and follow another person. They had to grow up and make grown up decisions. Fast! So… since these boys lost sight in their pureness as children, they start to become somewhat violent.

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Imagine being in a plane crash that landed on an island. Boys within the age of 10-12, no cultivation, no parents, and no idea on what anyone is going to do next. Traumatizing right? But since they are put into such a hard situation, they grow up fast and become more fierce. One thing that I found fascinating out of this book is how the boys took a different twist on violence. You really can’t take anything good out of vicious behavior, but they did! On page 70, it says, “You should have seen the blood!” By them acting this way, it not only shows that they are looking at tough situations in an exciting matter, but really shows you how kids really act. There needs to be some examples of how 10-12 year olds act so it can express how sad it is that they are forced to act has adults. And this book does that.

Part of the boys acting as adults is them having to make adult survival skills. These boys have to survive on their own and they also have to use the materials around them. One example of this is on page 40. It says, “His specs- use them as burning glasses!” The boys had a great idea on how to start a fire with the materials around them. They used Peggy’s glasses and reflected the sun off of them to spark a flame. Even though the stripping of their innocence is sad because these boys are so young, it has prepared them for their new, smart, and effective survival skills that are so needed on the island they crashed on.

Lord of the Flies isn’t the only book that expressed lost of chastity, Bless the Beast and Children did too. Right from the start, this book established dominance to these young boys. On page 16, it states, “Send us a boy- We’ll send you a cowboy!” (Camp Slogan) This starts the book off by letting us know that this camp is already to the beginning of stripping these boys from their innocence. In this novel, their overall mission was to save buffalo from dying and from them escaping their camp. Through this journey, lots of events happened that stripped the children from their innocence. In the start of this book, there is a buffalo killing that all of the cabin mates see. Following that traumatic event, Cotton had a dream. That dream had put all of the boys in a turning of their stomachs as they are all sad by the memory. Boys experiencing just that one little thing at the start of camp really took away their pureness from the start. Following this act, Lally two escapes. Through this whole process, they go from transportation via horse… to stealing cars! Now if kids stealing cars and hot wiring a chevy doesn’t strip away their childhood innocence, then I don’t know what does.

As the book ends, the boys have a celebration. They have this little party because they are ecstatic about the buffalo running free and in the right direction. But with the buffalo’s newfound freedom, came with bottles of whiskey to celebrate with. That right there is not only illegal but also not very innocent. But as the book is tying up everything, Cotton ends up getting in a crash and dies. All five of the boys experience grief, sadness, pride, and even loss of innocence as young kids.

Like I said before, it’s very hard for me to see positives in books I’m not only forced to read, but think that they aren’t the best in my interest. With that being said, I took a lot from both of these books. Both of these books suffered from loss, traumatic events, and of course… loss of innocence. In both of these novels, the boys had to learn to step up to the plate, grow up, and make adult decisions while still being kids. Yes, they made mistakes. They didn’t succeed in every one of their objectives, but that’s what made them grow up faster. They went through rough experiences, and they learned. The hard way. It’s sad thinking that you are forced to grow out of your childhood stage because of situations you’re put in without your wanting… but in reality, it made every one of these boys stronger and more independent. And by both authors doing this to their novels, it really added that touch of integrity all of these boys needed.

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BBC and LoF Comparative Analysis: Childhood . (2022, Aug 20). Retrieved from