The present thesis represents a comparative approach to childhood in Lord of the Flies by
William Golding and The Catcher in the Rye by Jerome David Salinger.
Chapter 1, entitled The Child and Childhood in Literature, brings into discussion the general
theoretical and critical considerations of the myth of childhood and child motif as a literary
pattern in general and, in particular, the aspects of its literary reflection in Anglo-American
Chapter 2, entitled The Dual Representation of Childhood in Golding and Salinger, focuses
on both the destruction and the continuation of the myth of childhood, discusses Lord of
the Flies which reveals the darkness of man’s heart and the end of the myth of childhood
, and The Catcher in the Rye which preserves the myth of the childhood experience
The myth of childhood has been established as an important literary tradition in Western literature in general and in English literature in particular.
The beginning and the consolidation of the writers’ interest in the experience of childhood are to be found in the Romantic and the Victorian period.
The interest in this subject had an important continuation in the 20th century literature as well, where, after World War II, Salinger preserved the idea of the naivety and the purity of childhood, whereas Golding attempted to destroy the myth of childhood by showing that the experience of the childhood period would reveal the darkness of man’s heart, the end of human innocence.
Thus, both writers develop in literary terms a dual vision of the child and childhood experience.
A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF CHILDHOOD
IN GOLDING’S LORD OF THE FLIES AND
SALINGER’S THE CATCHER IN THE RYE
Işıl BOZKURT Kütahya – 200
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