The Destructors

Thes are the reading comprehension questions i did with Lola and Margui.

Rite of passage

  • An object of desire:breaking the house
  • Trespassing (defying authority)
  • Dare/challenge (construction of identity)
  • The mischief (it should be accepted and death with in a mature way)
  • Atonement (confession and regret->acceptance)

Symbols:

  • Mr Thomas’s house:
  • Mr Thomas and the children
  • Old misery
  • Money burning
  • The debris of the house
  • The laughter of the driver
  • Research and compare the Wormsley Common Gang with modern American gangs. Consider factors like membership, recruitment, enemies, activities, and motivations. What similarities did you find? What are some differences?

The Wormsley Common Gang is similar to modern American gangs as they both follow an initiation ritual when recruiting new members and they confront their enemies with violence and vandalism. However, American gangs engage in far more serious and obscure activities, such as drug trafficking and prostitution, while the kids from the gang only use vandalism. In addition, American gangs are motivated to gain wealth to live more comfortable lives, while the kids didn’t vandalise to steal money; in fact, they never stole anything. Another difference is that, when dealing with enemies, American gangs would kill them while the Wormsley Common Gang responded by vandalizing their property.

  • What do you see as the central theme of this story? Remember: a theme is not simply a subject like “love”. It is a fuller expression of what an author is trying to suggest about this subject. Write a paragraph explaining your interpretation of this story’s theme.

In our opinion, another important theme of the story is based on the “Loss of Innocence”. It is clearly shown that the group of children had lost their innocence during the story.They are children of nine years old. However, in the story it is shown that they did not lose their innocence completely since they never actually accept their mistake and the damage caused.

  • Identify three important conflicts present in the story. Explain what exactly is causing the problem—and whether they are internal or external in nature. Finally, explain which of these conflicts seems to the central problem.
  1. construction versus destruction. The gang members grew up seeing the destruction of war. They act as if destruction is a form of creation.In the story, not only the house of Old Missery was destroyed, but also the whole society after the war.The children, which are involved in the destroyed society, destroy the man’s house. Carrying out that act, it can be understand as if the children are ending with war. The house was the only thing that survived war, and destroying it means, starting all over again. The destruction of all, means the start of something new.
  1. society postwar. This external conflict points out the fact that the society was broken down after the war. Every person in society saw themselves totally affected and prejudiced by the war and tried to build up their normal lives back. However, war left an atmosphere of unconfidence, untruthful sense.

3.Building up society again would take a lot of time. belonging. This last conflict could be understood in two different ways. On the one hand, it can be understand as if T wants to belong to the gang. He is looking to fit on a group and to feel comfortable in it. That is a internal conflict since it is the character’s feeling. On the other hand, the sense of belonging could be understood to becoming part of society. At that moment in history, the society was destroyed after the war. That is why belonging to society was difficult to achieve. In our opinion, the central conflict is a combination of all of them. The war have left a destroyed society, harmful, where the people could not find their place. The destruction of the society, creates a new beginning.

  • Of what significance is the setting of this story in blitzed London? Does the story have anything to say about the consequences of war? About the causes of war?

The significance of the setting of the story is that because of London being blitzed the kids didn’t have anything to play with, because everything was destroyed. Also that the house made contrast in the neighbourhood. This particular area of the town was really damaged by the bombing of the city but Mr Thomas House was the only one that survived the bombings of London. The story talks about the consequences of war very indirectly, but it is still very relevant. The kids conduct show how war had fragmented society. After war the kids started being more violent, they had the necessity to destroy, because they had no more suffering. They were used to all the violence and sadness from war, so when it ended they kept having that mentality.

  • Describe what happens in the resolution of the story. Why might Graham Greene have ended the story in this manner?

What happens in the resolution is that they locked down Mr Misery in the bathroom cubicle and a men who had the house tied down to his lorry broke the house down. What Graham Greene wanted to do with the ending of the story is that even though war had already destructed the London what would give the last straw that broke the canela back would be the british society.

  • On the surface this is a story of action, suspense, and adventure. At a deeper level it is about delinquency, war, and the hidden forces which motivate our actions. Do you agree? Give reasons for your answer.Does the destruction of Old Misery’s house by the boys seem more senseless than the destruction brought about by the war that had destroyed London—or do you see it differently? Explain in a paragraph.

The kids are a metaphor of war and the house is a representation of London. The author wants to portray how war had destructed the society of London and how it had been damaged from the roots. The kids represent war and violence, that’s why they break the house, because the author wants to make a critic about the consequences of war in the society. The kids didn’t care about Mr misery, they only wanted destruction, which is what war represents violence destruction and hatred. And the house was london, it did not survived the “war”.

  • Research a definition of the philosophy of nihilism. How might the Wormsley Common Gang’s actions in the story demonstrate a kind of nihilism?

Nihilism is a condition in which all ultimate values lose their value. That means that traditional values and beliefs are unfounded and that existence is useless and senseless.

In our opinion, the Wormsley Common Gang represent a society post war where the nihilism is present.

Nihilism is based on a belief where conditions in the social organization are so bad as to make destruction desirable for its own sake independent of any constructive program or possibility.

That could be compared to the gang and to the society at that time.

the situation was so destroyed, that the gang finish with the destruction, they end up with the only thing that survived war to begin all over again.

They forgot about the moral values in society, because there was any value in society at that time.