The abuses of power displayed in The Lord of the Flies and “I Only Came to Use the Phone” show how power when given or assumed can change the person who has been elevated above others as well as changing the person who is being abused. When people in authority abuse this power, they can affect people’s lives and well being.
A person that abuses power can often weaken the spirit of the person they are abusing and will change the person. In “I Only Came to Use the Phone,” the quote "Herculina standing in the doorway, Maria gave up"(Gabriel Garcia, pg 86) shows us how a person that will abuse or hurt us will weaken our spirit. Maria saw Herculina as an abusive, powerful person. So she gave up her will to try anything in the sanatorium. Before this Herculina already instilled fear in Maria. “No pleading would move that maniac in coveralls who was called Herculian because of her uncommon strength. She was in charge of difficult cases, and two inmates had been strangled to death by her polar bear arms.” (Gabriel Garcia, pg 75) This quote explains why Herculina weakened Maria’s spirit because of her abusiveness to other patients. After repeatedly asking to use the phone, Maria was denied and thought to be crazy. She was not allowed to use the phone. This abusive figure ruined Maria's fighting spirit to stay sane and to escape the sanatorium. This abusive figure pushed her so far that Maria gave up and really changed into a crazy person. An abusive person will change and break our spirit.
An image can be used as a powerful symbol like our United States flag is a symbol of power. Or an image can be an abusive symbol like face paint in Lord of the Flies. Jack, the savages’ group leader, would put blood on his group members faces to show strength and to instill fear into Ralph's group. The quote, “Jack painted and garlanded sat there like an idol."(William Golding, pg 149) Idols can be seen as very powerful by the people that worship them. The face paint not only put fear in Ralph’s group, but it gave Jack power over the island and his group. It instilled fear in them because it made them look more wild and intimidating like an animal. Golding could be using the blood or paint as power. This shows how the paint or the image of them gives them power; the character has the choice of abusing or using for good the image that gives them the power.
When a large group of people band together they get a mob mentality. This causes them to do violent acts they would normally never do by themselves. As in the scene where Simon is killed by the dancing boys running around yelling “Kill the beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood!”(William Golding, pg 152) This shows us just what was going through the minds of the boys. We know they would normally not do a thing like this because Golding makes no mention of them being trouble makers except Jack, but not so bad as killing someone. This proves the point that when the boys are together they became savages as they...