Sunday, July 23, 2006

L of the F

I'm almost done reading Lord of the Flies.

The book before this, Don't Know Much About History, took me almost 4 months to read. Granted, it was probably 600-700 pages and my reading time has been squelched by the more important task of mothering; but I'm flying through Flies lickety-split.

It is really good.

I read it the first time in late junior high (I think I ran into a paperback that my dad had); my main memory of it was at the end of the book when Piggy was pushed off a cliff and dashed against the rocks - and a graphic description of his brains splayed out. I can remember being upset and confused by it. However, reading it again, I can't believe I wasn't more upset by the entire story; perhaps I was too young to understand at the time.

The inside jacket says it perfectly: "Golding's aim [was] to 'trace the defect of society back to the defect of human nature'".

Yo. This speaks to me: I feel like I've had a front-row seat to view all the unsightly defects in my own person, especially within this last year. It has been rough - and I must admit, I don't know how all this junk built up.

Confronting my own ugliness has given me fresh insight into some of the reasons behind our societal ills. I've been thinking about a lot recently. If I have nagging faults that impede my interaction with others, how much harder, then, is it for someone who is truly starting with less? I would say I've had it pretty easy, and yet - there is plenty of hideousness within myself to address.

Human nature.

Yes - it is easier to understand the group as a whole through the rough task of sifting through my own garbage. It has to be done, but crap - it ain't pleasant.

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