The Maze Runner

Pdf fan Tap here to download this LitChart! (PDF)

Ben Character Analysis

A former Runner, Ben goes through the Changing on the day Thomas arrives in the Glade. In a state of psychological distress, Ben almost kills Thomas because he thinks Thomas does not belong in the Glade. As punishment for attempted murder, Alby banishes Ben to the Maze, effectively sentencing him to death, even though Ben deeply repents and apologizes for his actions.

Ben Quotes in The Maze Runner

The The Maze Runner quotes below are all either spoken by Ben or refer to Ben. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Delacorte Press edition of The Maze Runner published in 2009.
Chapter 14 Quotes

Alby spoke in a loud, almost ceremonious voice, looking at no one and everyone at the same time. “Ben of the Builders, you’ve been sentenced to Banishment for the attempted murder of Thomas the Newbie. The Keepers have spoken, and their word ain’t changing. And you ain’t coming back. Ever.”

Related Characters: Alby (speaker), Thomas, Ben
Page Number: 93
Explanation and Analysis:

In this passage, Alby punishes Ben--who's pleading temporary insanity, i.e., the "Changing"--for attempting to kill Thomas. Ben probably doesn't deserve such a harsh punishment--he wasn't in his right mind when he attacked Thomas, and has shown himself to be valuable to the Gladers in other ways, too. Furthermore, he's begged for forgiveness and appealed to the other boys' sympathies. Yet Alby is so insistent on procedure and ceremony that he doles out a harsh punishment to Ben, whether it's just or not. Alby believes that his job is to maintain safety and unity among his followers--the best way to do so, he thinks, is by harshly punishing anyone who steps out of line. There's a constant sense of danger among the Gladers, but not just because of the Maze--Alby himself is a dangerous person, and the kind of rigid, conformist mentality that allows for cruel punishments like this can easily lead to other atrocities.

A+

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other The Maze Runner quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Chapter 15 Quotes

“Order,” Newt continued. “Order. You say that bloody word over and over in your shuck head. Reason we’re all sane around here is ’cause we work our butts off and maintain order. Order’s the reason we put Ben out—can’t very well have loonies runnin’ around tryin’ to kill people, now can we? Order. Last thing we need is you screwin’ that up.”

Related Characters: Newt (speaker), Thomas, Ben
Page Number: 102
Explanation and Analysis:

The Gladers operate on a system of strict order--everyone has to do their part or risk banishment, which is the same as death. Newt is irritated when Thomas--still new to the way things work--complains that he finds his duties menial and boring, and he wants to become a Maze Runner. Newt sees this kind of ambition and individualism as dangerous, so he warns Thomas to devote himself to "order." For Newt, living in the Glade means working hard and accepting one's place.

One reason that Newt isn't sympathetic to Thomas is that he's been among the Gladers for longer than Thomas. When Thomas points out that it may not have been right to banishment Ben, Newt dismisses Thomas's concerns. The Gladers don't really believe in independence or mercy--they believe in work and order, and nothing else.

Get the entire The Maze Runner LitChart as a printable PDF.
The maze runner.pdf.medium

Ben Character Timeline in The Maze Runner

The timeline below shows where the character Ben appears in The Maze Runner. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 3
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
Growing Up Theme Icon
...older boys starts mocking Thomas, saying he must have “klunked” his pants when he heard Ben scream. Thomas tries to push past the boy and go up the stairs, but the... (full context)
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
Growing Up Theme Icon
...top of the stairs, Thomas opens a door and sees Alby and Newt sitting by Ben who is writhing in pain on a bed. Large green veins crisscross Ben’s body. Sickened... (full context)
Chapter 10
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
...a rock. When the boy is lying before him, Thomas realizes his crazed attacker is Ben, the sick boy who was screaming. (full context)
Chapter 11
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
Growing Up Theme Icon
Ben gets up and takes out a knife from his pocket. Before Ben can strike, Alby... (full context)
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
...Glade. The next morning, Thomas wakes up feeling depressed for having been a part of Ben’s death. But as he starts his training with the Keeper of the Blood House, he... (full context)
Chapter 13
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
...find a quiet place to think. He is interrupted by Chuck, who tells him that Ben didn’t die from the arrow wound and that the Keepers have gathered and decided to... (full context)
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
...close, Alby assembles everyone at the East Door. A couple of Gladers drag a crying Ben to the Door and Newt brings out a giant pole with a collar at one... (full context)
Chapter 14
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
Alby wraps the collar around Ben’s neck. Ben pleads that he only tried to kill Thomas because the Changing made him... (full context)
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
Sacrifice  Theme Icon
Crying and pleading for help, Ben looks around the crowd hoping to inspire someone to intervene. Thomas’ guilt makes him hide... (full context)
Chapter 15
Memory and Identity  Theme Icon
Stability and Order vs. Change and Chaos  Theme Icon
Sacrifice  Theme Icon
Thomas goes to sleep with the images of Ben’s haunted face on his mind. The next morning, Newt wakes Thomas up and tells him... (full context)