The Day Of The Triffids Essay

794 words - 4 pages

How would you respond to an apocalyptic situation where the structure and order of society has ceased to exist? In the novel The Day of the Triffids, Bill Masen, a patient at St Merryn’s Hospital in London, lacking the necessity of vision from a facial ‘Triffid’ sting, awakens to a world absent of normality. The majority of humanity has been permanently blinded by celestial comet debris and the Triffids have been liberated from their tethers, ambushing the vulnerable blind. A Triffid is a genetically modified plant with carnivorous eating habits and the ability to move. This novel was written by John Wyndham, which depicts a theme of conflict between necessity and morality which is important to the story in numerous ways. Necessity versus morality is the conflict that motivates the action, with events in the plot and the steadily increasing sense of narrative tension throughout the book all being defined by the tension between the striving to maintain a degree of human morality and the necessity to cast aside that morality in order to survive.

This theme has a profound effect on events, as there are two contrasting and opposing sides. There are the characters that see it as their duty to aid the people without vision for a short time. On the contrary there are people who choose to relocate so they can survive long-term. The latter option is the logical movement for people who consider, and are concerned about, the survival of humanity. There are conflicts, which are a result of the people with vision not conforming to the opposite cause, which has an impact on events. A reference in the text that reflects this is when Bill Masen witnesses this conflict near the University of London. He listens to Coker’s speech, the content arguing that the people who evaded the comet debris within the University boundaries should follow their ethical beliefs, which also applies to Bill. Coker shouts, “What I do know is that if bastards like you don't muck in and help, there ain't going to be many left alive by the time they come to clear this bloody mess up.” This shows that Coker took the ethical approach to the situation in accordance with his morals, but was not successful, as the two opposing sides clashed which caused conflict between their beliefs. The idea of this novel has an impact on the outcome of...

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