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Improvise Task Based on Lord of the Flies

Jack Todhunter | Friday August 07, 2009

Categories: Prose, Lord Of The Flies, Writing, Productive, Creative or Original Writing, Speaking & Listening, Drama-Focused

If you have read the last page of the novel Lord of the Flies, you will realise that William Golding had the novel Coral Island in mind when he wrote his tale.

The Task

The following playlet explores some of the issues involved. Once you’ve read the script, improvise a response then write it up.

  • What exactly DOES he think?
  • Does he sympathise with Golding or attack his views?

The following scene takes place in the common room of a public school. One teacher is sipping coffee and marking some school exercise books. The other, William Golding is becoming agitated. He is reading a book. In exasperation, he throws it on the table and yells out.

Golding: Balderdash!!!

Carruthers: (Jumping in alarm and nearly spilling his coffee) My word, Golding, what in heaven’s name is wrong?

Golding: This rubbish! (he indicates the book on the floor)

Carruthers: No need to rant, old boy. I nearly scalded myself just then. What appears to be the problem?

Golding: I’ve never read such twaddle. (picking it up) Have you ever read it? (hands it over to Carruthers)

Carruthers: (Reads title) Coral Island? It’s a best seller, old chap. Are you jealous?

Golding: Jealous? Me? Of that? Absolutely not. I’d be embarrassed to write such piffle.

Carruthers: My nephew loved it. Lots of people do.

Golding: Well lots of people are wrong. You are a teacher Carruthers. You know what they’re like when left to their own devices. (Points at book) This is the stuff of fairytales. It’s all so neat and tidy. They have such a jolly good adventure and get along so nicely together.

Carruthers: It’s entertaining. It’s a ripping yarn.

Golding: But it’s all lies. (He rises from his chair and moves to the window to look down on the school grounds) Just look at them all down there in the quad. Take a look.

(Carruthers walks to the window to look down on the students below)

Golding: Imagine Class Alpha Minor on a desert island. Imagine any of them! Just...

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