Abuse of power and corruption is a prevalent theme in both the The Lord of The Flies by William Golding and “I Only Came to Use the Phone”, a short story by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. As demonstrated in both, when people are isolated from civilization, the society they create will eventually become corrupt and, in most cases, those with power will abuse it. While this is not the only case in which people or societies become corrupt or those with power abuse it, abuse of power and corruption is more likely to happen in an isolated society which lacks the presence of civilization. This occurs when there is a lack of order, and no set rules with consequences; two things necessary for human ...view middle of the document...
It was almost seven o’clock. He had to leave home in ten minutes and she was afraid he would cancel everything because she was late. The matron appeared to listen to her with attention.
‘What’s your name?’ She asked.
Maria said her name with a sigh of relief, but the woman did not find it after going over the list several times. With some alarm she questioned another matron, who had nothing to say and shrugged her shoulders” (Marquez 77).
This shows both corruption of the asylum society and abuse of power by the matrons. One way it shows corruption is that the matron only “appears to listen to her with attention” (Marquez 77), so the reader can infer from the quote that the matron probably is not actually paying attention to what Maria is saying and misses her explaining that she should not be there and is not a patient. Another part that shows corruption and abuse of power is when the matron does not find Maria’s name on the list, but still takes Maria to a room and makes her stay. The matrons not only proceed to “inject Maria with a sedative” (Marquez 75) forcing her to stay but she is “tied to the metal bars of the bed by her wrists and ankles” (Marquez 75-76). This happens after Maria swears “by my dead mother I only came to use the phone” (Marquez 75) while Herculina, the only named matron in the asylum, has her in a headlock while trying to sedate her. This is a good example of abuse of power as the matrons ignore Maria’s defense and force her to stay.
Not only is abuse of power and corruption prevalent in “I Only Came to Use the Phone,” but this theme strongly exists in The Lord of The Flies. This book shows corruption of power repeatedly. One strong example is when Ralph, the leader of the original group, is talking to Robert, a member of the rebel group led by Jack. Outside of Jack’s territory, Ralph asks where Jack is and Robert says:
“’He’s going to beat Wilfred.’
‘I don’t know. He didn’t say. He got angry and made us tie Wilfred up. He’s been’ - he giggled excitedly - ‘he’s been tied for hours, waiting’” (Golding 159).
This shows abuse of power by Jack because he gets angry and tells his group to tie up Wilfred for no apparent reason. What the reader can infer is that Jack may be angry because he could not kill a pig like he is angry in the beginning of the book and ties Wilfred up out of anger until he kills a pig. It also shows corruption of the society because the group obviously does not do anything to stop Jack, who acts with “irresponsible authority” (Golding 160) from tying him up, and Robert seems to be excited that Wilfred is tied up because he is “giggling excitedly” (Golding159). The entire...