An Innate Evil Of Manipulation In The Book Ender's Game

In the book Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, the audience is taken on an exciting adventure that explores the involvedness of Ender’s passage through the battle conservatory and the bugger conquests. From the start of his experience, Ender was being monitored and assessed by adult teachers. They inserted an electronic chip in his neck to manipulate his performance. The Bugger conquest was presented in the book as a depiction of what the end of the world would look like to the adults. However, in reality, the book involves a series of games and competitions that aim at passing levels that would make Ender the greatest of all time. Through the events of the book, the readers can realize that the teachers are Ender’s real enemies. In Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, humans contain an innate evil of manipulation. That is why they use Ender’s as a specimen to test human potentials.

Colonel Graff was an evil and manipulative teacher whose only objective was to create super creatures that could fight battles without losing. Colonel Graff controls the situation of the game by taking out the chip from Ender. This is to make it look like Ender had failed his preliminary tests and was no longer under close observation. However, this is not true. In one of his conversations, Graff explained that “I’ve watched through his eyes, I’ve listened through his ears, and I tell you he’s the one”, This shows that Graff was watching closely and manipulating Ender to ensure that he fits the mold of the frontrunner that was needed. It also shows that he would be able to comprehend the inner and extreme functioning of Ender’s body and mind and later manipulate him. From this, it is evident that humans have an innate evil of manipulation. Also, those who mold Ender try to make the entire thing look like they are interested in his wellbeing. However, they are only interested in how fit Ender can be to beat the enemy. For instance, it is said that this was the first step towards making Ender fit their desired requirements. For example, Graff says that “we have to make him believe that he is alone and has to fight his own battles”. This was an evil-like form of manipulation because it had no significant benefits to Ender. In fact, it destroyed him at the expense of the advantage of Colonel Graff. Also, this was just the first step of manipulating Ender and making him destructive. Unfortunately, it was a success.

When they first arrived at the battle school, Graff began his innate evil manipulation once again. He started contemplating how he was going to start by making Ender strong enough to lead. He begins by making him an isolated learner so that Ender can explore the new environment. Graff comes up with the idea that focused on “isolating him enough that he remains creative”. This seemed like testing Ender’s limits by manipulating him. Also, the first concern about Graff manipulating Ender was the thought that he had no choice but to come with him. So, he first makes other kids hate him and sits back to watch. Playing with his mind, Graff gets Ender to realize that there is no one to save him. Graff tells Ender that “Individual beings are all tools that the others use to aid us all stay alive.” From this, Graff is basically proving that he does not consider Ender as a human being with breaking points and feelings. He views him as something that can be used for his benefit, no matter the cost. This proves that Graff has no limits and is willing to make use of Ender in any way to save the world. It also shows how evil and manipulative he is.

When digging deeper into Graff’s purpose for considering Ender as a tool, you can notice that his main aim is to make him feel valueless, and he is just there to make the game a success. This is established through one of the games known as the “Giant’s Drink.” This game is supposed to have no possibility of winning. This puts Ender into frustration and forces him to do the impossible. Graff and the teachers did not expect him to act that way and were “thrilled that it shows his adaptability,” as well as how his brain can help him get out of any situation. Graff was thrilled because he thought that his earlier actions could limit Ender from thinking outside the box. Also, at the time when this happened, the teachers started being cautious and had to start contributing to Ender’s simulations. They were now manipulating each of Ender’s battles to ensure the odds were against him. They thought manipulating him this way would bring out his genius. They began by manipulating his army, giving him weak soldiers, and notifying late when there are battles. “All these made his anger towards his teacher grow.” He wanted to prove that he was no longer their tool. The manipulation turned sore, and Ender also showed that he was a human who had innate evil that could not tolerate manipulation anymore.

In conclusion, Orson Scott Card has depicted the theme of innate human evil of manipulation by showing how subjects can be used as tools to achieve success. Throughout the book, readers can realize how evil and manipulative the teachers were. 

16 December 2021
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