A True “Lord of the Flies”


But it turned out just the opposite.  The six boys from a Tongan Catholic school were rescued in 1966 after having survived for fifteen months on the uninhabited island of ‘Ata, all still alive and healthy.  They even set the broken leg of one of their members.

This outcome, unlike that of William Golding’s fiction story, shows what humankind can accomplish, given the right education.  The story was covered by the journalist Rutger Bregman, in The Guardian, an Australian newspaper.  The six boys had decided to go on a spree in a stolen sailboat (they contradicted their training) , were shipwrecked during a storm, and were luckily able to swim to the abandoned island of ‘Ata.  They caught rain in coconut shells, and fish, to survive.  They organized someone to watch the fire, and the coastline, and it finally paid off for them, unlike for Golding’s less civilized boys.

Their rescuer was Peter Warner, the free-spirited son of an Australian millionaire.  I don’t know if he got the lesson of these boys’ education.

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