Life in the Military School
To the average person, school is a place to learn where one may speak their mind freely, yet stay orderly through a light set of values and order. In The Lords of Discipline, we learn of a different type of school. The Institute is a military academy with rigorous mental and physical standards, and very straight-forward and rigid policies. What is learned at the Institute is to stay loyal to your classmates. The upperclassmen do their best to keep this primary rule imbedded in the minds of the plebe's. In this story, we learn about an open-minded student at the academy whose own pride and determination allows him to stay in the system and not give up. He disagrees with the ways of the academy, but finds himself able to deal with the cruelties of the academy's nature.
Being that the Institute is a military school, there are certain things which are unchangeable to the cadets. The order will always remain the same way, a cadet must comply obediently and without hesitation to commanding officers. For the main character in the story, Will McLean, this order defies everything that he knows is right in the world. Life is harsh for him, he came there an unconditioned young man like the others and was groomed by their system to somewhat fit their standards. For a cadet, any knowledge about respect and rights prior to the institute must be forgotten so that one may be remodeled.
Another of the aspects that is key to life at the Institution is values. The values of the cadets at the Institution don't really exist at times. The one that will always remain true is the honor to not "shit on your classmates." Courage and bravery can put a person in the "in crowd" and failure to meet the standards will place you in the "out crowd." Will has found himself in the middle of these groups. He is still in the school because he simply has done nothing wrong according to policy, but in his heart he does not wish to be known as...