Classification Essay

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Classification Analysis of William Golding‘s “Thinking as a Hobby”

“Thinking as a Hobby,” by William Golding, is a prime example of division and classification. Many never ponder about what Golding describes as a “thinking as my hobby”(494). He spent an abundance of his lifetime developing classifications of the three kind of thinkers: grade-three thinking, grade-two thinking and grade-one thinking. The effective use of classification, shows how something so alike, is still very different.

Golding describes the first level of thinking as, “grade-three thinking, though more properly, it is feeling, rather than thought”(496). In other words, these grade-three thinkers are impulsive, and use feeling over logic. Under this classification, Golding showcases different thinkers from his personal life. One type of grade-three thinker he encountered were his teachers. Golding says, “Mr. Houghton thought with his neck” (496). This example shows, how his professor would become so enthusiastic, the protrusion of emotion and feelings could be seen from his swelling neck. Another example Golding uses is Miss Parsons. “She assured us that her dearest wish was our welfare, but I knew even then, with the mysterious clairvoyance of all childhood, that what she wanted most was the husband she never got” (496). Miss Parsons emotional display presents heartfelt intent. She was a hopeless romantic, who thought with little else than with her heart. Golding took from Miss Parsons’ act that people do not always need to think, but more just act with their human emotions.

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The next form of thinker is grade-two, the doubting thinkers. As Golding quotes, “Grade-two thinking is the detection of contradictions” (496). Golding uses demonstrative examples, such as a crowd cheering for a leader he did not think was all mighty. He oppressed others joy of the king, because it did not relate to how he felt; therefore, it must be wrong. “To hear American...
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