Does leadership corrupt, or are those who seek power already corrupt? Also, do leaders necessarily become corrupt at some point in time? The answer may not be as simple as what immediately seems correct. Various authors have explored this theme, each with a different aspect and approach. There has always been corruption in the world, be it on a small or large scale. No society has been spared from this gruesome monster. Therefore, authors have a vast field from which to pick when writing. However, there are three that seem to particularly stand out. These are "Lord of the Flies" by William Golding, Ayn Rand's "Anthem," and, of course, "Julius Caesar," commonly acknowledged as one of Shakespeare's greatest works.
Corruption means the impairment of integrity or morality. To be sure, there are many examples of this immorality in many people and societies during many times, and will continue to be so. Perhaps everyone possesses a partially blackened heart, and perhaps certain situations proceed with the charring of that vital organ. However, it is certainly possible that people are only ever corrupt due to the circumstances and the others who are involved in their lives. We may never know, but, through the exploration of vital novels that include this theme, we may compile a very certain database of each of our hearts. Of course, the most important part of all is relating this important knowledge to our current circumstances.
"Julius Caesar" also portrays a strange aspect of corrupt power-holders. In this case, the Senators have become more evil than Caesar, either by greed or fear of Caesar's possible ambition. Even the best of men, such as Brutus, are guilty of letting their fear overpower them, something that ultimately led to the demise of not only their leader, but of the goals that they were attempting to achieve through murder. However, the greed of most of Brutus' fellow senators led them to act rashly and through ill intent. Their corrupt hearts undoubtedly fueled their despicable actions.
The kind of corruption that takes place in the British schoolboys trapped on a desert island in “Lord of the Flies” is a rather unconventional one, being that almost everyone is corrupt and the boys are all a bit too young for the stereotype. However, the corruption undoubtedly mischievously lay in the hearts of the once unbelievably civilized group of equally astonishingly young boys, considering their unthinkably horrendous behavior. Often considered a classic tale of good and evil, "Lord of the Flies" can also be termed a classic tale of corruption.
"Anthem" is, yet again, a stranger portrayal of corruption than even the other two unconventional types. In this novella, the disturbingly warped society is the only peek into the disgusting lives of those who could have led such mindless hordes of underdeveloped potential. However, the hauntingly upsetting lives of the people in Equality 7-2521's life are about all one person can stomach. Their society has become so unbelievably corrupt that they have officially decided to hysterically pound every ounce of humanity from day one of an infant's life.
Please, join us as we sail across the river Styx and into the deep, dark underworld of corruption.
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