People lose their humanity during certain circumstances in order to survive. In the book, The Road written by Cormac McCarthy, all humanity is lost in order to survive the volcano apocalypse. In the book there was a huge volcano apocalypse that almost wiped out the human race entirely. The whole world was falling apart the system that everyone followed was no more the small amount of people who survived were fighting hunger,coldness and also cannibalism. The world turned dark and ashy from all the smoke from the volcanoes all the cities were abandoned and there was no nature left to see.
People saw no solutions so they started to turn into cannibals and thieves in order to survive. While traveling on the road, the father and the son meet people who are cannibals and thieves. These encounters tell us that humankind has the ability to be wicked during desperate times. When the dad and the son were heading towards the south in order to survive, they encountered cannibals that wanted to manipulate them with water and food. While the dad and the son were on a road heading towards the south they heard a loud truck approaching.
As soon as the truck came into view hey saw that they were a group of people on the truck that they assumed were cannibals. They looked intimidating because they had guns and knives. Suddenly they stopped because one of them had to pee so he went towards the woods. The cannibal was within rangefeet of the father and the son that were hiding. Sooner than later they saw each other, as McCarthy wrote ” When he looked up the roadrat was holding the knife in his hand ” (66).
Before the father could react as it says in the Road, ” He dove and grabbed the boy and rolled and came up holding him against his chest with the knife at his throat ” (66). This encounter illustrates humanity’s capacity to be wicked because it shows you how the people in the Road are eating people in order to survive, no matter if it is an adult or child. Also it shows you how selfish they are because the cannibal does not even hesitate to kill and eat the boy. That means that they do not care about life anymore since the apocalypse happens.
Not only did they confront wicked cannibals, but they also faced a thief while on their journey to the south. While the father and the son were at the beach a sneaky thief came and robbed their cart that had all their necessary esources to survive. The father and the boy wanted to forget all of the destruction from the apocalypse and so they decided to go to the beach. When they got to the beach, they were not surprised or impressed by the ocean. Instead they thought it was colorless and unpleasant.
Since both the father and the son traveled for almost the whole day they were tired and so the boy slept in the tent but the father decided to take a swim. While the boy was asleep, he was unaware of his surroundings and of the dangers around him. Soon after the boy fell asleep a hief saw the opportunity to take the cart with all of their materials. Once the father came out of the water, he saw that everything was gone and started to scream at the boy they saw some cart tracks leading away so they followed. Sooner than later, they caught up with the thief as soon as the father saw him he screamed stop.
When the thief, heard that he turned around with a knife in his hand, according to McCarty “ If you don not put down the knife and get away from the cart, then said, I am going to blow your brains out. The thief looked at the child and what he saw was very sobering to him” (256). After the father got his cart back, he was not finished with the thief he told him to take his clothes off as it says, on the road ” Take your clothes off what? Take them off. Every god damned stitch. come on. Don’t do this. Il kill you where you stand, don’t do this man.
I won’t tell you again alright” (256). This demonstrates humanity’s capacity to be wicked because it tells you how brutal the father was treating the thief knowing that he would of done the same thing to survive. The father treated the thief like an animal and making him cry and beg for his life. Instead of the father just etting the cart and leave, he stripped his dignity by telling him to take his clothes off and by also leaving him for dead. The father and his son were so desperate for food that they when into a house not knowing whose it was and what dangers could emerge .
While traveling to the south the father and son were running out of food which made them more desperate to scavenge in houses that could be occupied by cannibals. The nights seemed longer and hotter each day for the father and the son because they were starving. After a while they decided to look for food in the first house they see. Sooner than later, they saw a house and decided to scavenge it as they were approaching the house the boy, though it was too risky and sketchy to go in. As it says on the road, “What if theres someone here papa? Theres no one here.
We should go, papa”(106). The father knew it was a risk they had to take in order to survive. When they went inside the house they saw a pile of clothes and blankets. Then they found a door that lead to the basement, they assumed someone was hiding food there since it was locked. As they went in they smelled a very bad stench then out of nowhere as Mccarthy escribes it ” Huddled against the back wall were chained male and females, all trying to hide, shiilding their faces with their hands. On a mattress layed a man with his legs gone to the hip.
The smell was hideous. ” (111). This demonstrates humanity’s capacity to be wicked because it tells you how brutal people turned into after the apocalypse happened. They turned into cannibals that captured people and put them in the basement to eat them one by one to survive. It was basically a slaughter house for the cannibals. They gromsumly tortured and killed the innocent people by cutting their limbs and body parts in order o eat them. While traveling towards the south, the father and the son meet survivors who were cannibals and thieves.
This encounter let us know that humankind has the ability to be wicked during tough times. The road tells us that if we ever have an apocalypse in the whole world the outcome could be devastating. Survivors that survived the apocalypse could become desperate and turn into thieves and cannibals. That would only make the world worse and more dangerous for everyone. This could be a message to us that if we keep on with this pace we might have our own apocalypse that we will for sure regret.