The Role of Money in Society Depicted in Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island

The Role of Money in Society Depicted in Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island

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The love of money is the root of all evil, a statement that has proved itself true through the centuries. Loving money traps us, as human beings. It is not a bad thing to enjoy what money can do; however, the love of money is a wasted effort that can put all in grave peril. It is at our advantage that we have the ability to choose whether we ‘want’ to fall into that trap. Unfortunately, that choice is difficult since society associates one’s character with wealth and financial management. The mishaps, deaths, and hardships that occur from the beginning of the tale are the result of deliberate deception for personal gain. In Treasure Island, greed sends the characters on a voyage. Robert Louis Stevenson makes a social commentary on the role that money has come to play in our society.
Most would say that money does not define who we are. However, socially we are conditioned to think that a person of good character has money and can manage wealth. In Stevenson’s day, even more so than today, a person of wealth is assumed to be of good character. who knew you;
Squire Trelawney, an official representative of society, naively vows that Long John Silver “is a man of substance… [because he has a] banker’s account, which has never been over drawn” (31). In the Squire’s defense, one would surmise that Silver did get his funds through respectable means (Silver owned a bar). However, Silver engineers the mutiny and is a cold-blooded murderer who played both sides of the fence, showing loyalty to none but himself. There is nothing redeemable in Silver’s character. Silver says what needs to be heard so that he can get a head. The person with the healthiest relationship with money is Silver- who turns out to be the worst charac...


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...ust be in place: honesty, loyalty, kindness, patience, and the other extolled biblical qualities. One must assume that one’s neighbor is, to a degree trustworthy. To know that one can turn and walk away without getting a knife in their back. That is not the case with Silver and yet he is the embodiment of success. This is an irony lies within the tale of Treasure Island.
Money, money, money, and the love of money is the root of all evil. Money, has led the characters of Treasure Island to kill, lie, cheat, and put themselves in great peril to acquire it. The Squire Trelawney, the good Doctor, and Jim really have no cause to go in the search of the fortune that they did not earn or place where it rest. Wealth, whether found, earned, or inherited does not automatically speak well of the owner. The test of one’s character should be more than economical success.

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