Escaping an Epidemic

Throughout my reading of Clay’s Ark I constantly questioned myself on what I would do if I was put in the situation of the Maslin’s, infected and forced into a controlled enclave, where the disease was incurable but contained. I tried to understand the reasoning behind Blake’s leaving, which was for his daughters in search for a cure. However, I could not help but wonder if I would have been gutsy enough to leave the safety of the enclave if I had been in Blake’s shoes.

My viewpoint on Blake’s actions changed during my reading of Zone One, where I realized that a majority of the people did exactly the opposite of what Blake did in his enclave. The people in Zone One sought safety from the zombies through the military bases they occupied. In order to ‘guarantee’ safety, they sacrificed their freedom through the rules they agreed to follow to be allowed into the military bases. I found it interesting how oppositely the citizens in Zone One acted than Blake, sacrificing freedom for safety, turning ordinary people into military rule followers, “Soldiers of the new circumstance. What did it serve to hold them to strict military standards when they were such an unlikely lot: unemployable man-children, erstwhile cheerleaders, salesmen of luxury boats, gym teachers, food bloggers, patent clerks, cafeteria lunch ladies, dispatchers from international delivery companies” (Whitehead, 47). Blake exhibited his lack of rule following when he left the enclave’s rules and security and infected the entire country due to his decision to escape. Blake sacrificed his and other’s safety in order to gain freedom. The citizen’s sacrificed independence in Zone One while Blake attempted to gain it, but both parties had the same goal, to escape the groups of infected individuals.

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