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The Beach

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by

Linda Fang

on 23 January 2013

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Transcript of The Beach

The Beach A young British backpacker, Richard, goes to Thailand looking for an adventure. He meets a man called Daffy, when he is at a guesthouse in Bangkok, who tells him about “paradise”. The next morning Richard finds a map pinned to his door and discovers that Daffy has committed suicide. The map shows the way to a secret beach on an island in a national park in the Gulf of Thailand, where tourists are forbidden to go. Together with a French couple, Etienne and Francoise, Richard decides to travel there. After an adventurous journey the three find the secret island as well as a small community of travellers who have gone to the beach in search of a place unspoilt by tourism. They soon make friends with the others and settle down to live in “paradise”. However, tensions develop within the group and things start to go wrong and as events spiral out of control, the community‘s inability to cope with a real crisis is revealed. SUMMARY THESIS In Alex Garland’s “The Beach”, it is revealed that paradise is not always wonderful and can also make people lose their humanity. Freud Theory (remaining psychic apparatus in main character--Richard) ID: Symbolism The beach:
-Appearance vs. reality
“…a lagoon hidden from the sea and passing boats by a high, curving wall of rock…idyllic white sands and coral gardens...waterfalls surrounded by thick jungle…On the white sands, fishing in the coral gardens, is a select group of travelers” (The Beach 12).
-Utopia society

The map:
- Starting point for the loss of humanity
- The map is the boundary between the world and paradise
- Burned the map= confined EGO: SUPEREGO: "It began with kicking, which quickly became stabbing. In the chest, the groin, the arms, everywhere. Next he straddled the corpse and began tugging at the neck. Or that's what I thought he was doing. It wasn't completely clear through the shadows, and most of the view was blocked by Bug's broad back. I only saw when he rose up. He'd cut Sammy's head off. Cut it off, and was swinging it by the hair. And suddenly Jean had a knife and was cutting at the thin German girl, slicing into her belly and pulling out her insides. Then Cassie joined them, hunched over Zeph, working on his thighs. Etienne vomited, and within seconds the corpses were swarmed." (Garland 325)
"Jed and Keaty had been my best two friends on the beach, and even if it was risky- particular with Keaty- I couldn't disappear without offering them the chance to come too." (Garland 392) Freud Theory ID: Sal Have absolute power on the beach Would do any thing to keep the beach alive SUPEREGO: Jed A human life is worthless compared to the beach “And me, I still believe in paradise. But now at least I know it’s not some place you can look for, ‘cause it’s not where you go. It’s how you feel for a moment in your life when you’re a part of something, and if you find that moment… it lasts forever.” - “‘let me spill the problem out. With Karl running around like a headless chicken, who’s to say he won’t suddenly appear during—’ ‘Sal,’ I interrupted. ‘I won’t do it’”. (Garland 384) high moral
human life worth more than the beach “That was the rafters' big mistake." (Garland 353)
"' Do something to help them!' 'Like what?'(...)'I don't know!' 'well neither do i, so belt up! You'll get me killed too!"(Garland 357) - -Richard "I noticed the bad smell as soon as I climbed into the hospital tent. It was sweet and sour, vomit for the sour and something less distinct for the sweet. "You get used to it," Jed said quickly. He hadn't even turned round, so he couldn't have seen me wince. Maybe he'd heard me cut my breathing. "In a couple of minutes you won't smell a thing. Don't go." (Garland 333)
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