Lord of the Flies by William Golding
Lord of the flies was written by William Golding in 1954. It is an
enthralling, book that explores the concept of the behaviour of man
when he is exempt from society. Golding achieves this by stranding a
group of British schoolboys on a secluded island, in the midst of a
war. Throughout this period the boys evolve from being civilised and
let savagery take over.
This book is well written and effectively presents the theme of the
story: the evil that man is capable of. Once read, this book will stay
in your memory for its provocative idea that humans are a flawed race.
The story takes place on a remote, tropical island. As the island is
secluded, there is no contact from the outside world. This is
significant because this means that the rules that applied in the
outside world don’t apply here. The boys are now free from society,
which holds together people’s judgement of what is right and what is
wrong. The absence of such an influential factor to the peace of man,
permits anarchy to break out.
The island is a microsm of the real world. This means that the same
fundamental activities that take place in the real world also take
place on the island, just on a smaller scale. For example the outside
world is fighting an intense war; a war is also taking place on the
island, the battle of civilisation and savagery.
The lord of the flies presents many themes and ideas. The major ones
being good versus evil or civilisation versus barbarism and the evil
man is capable of. Golding portrays that there are two major impulses
in man. Order and civilisation or anarchy and savagery. He also
implies that anarchy is the more dominant impulse. He depicts the
battle of good versus evil with the battle between Ralph and Jack. For
example, Ralph is losing his authoritative power because he is bent
upon creating a society governed by rules and regulations. He wanted
the fire to keep burning; he wanted the latrines in a place where it
wasn’t intrusive. People got sick of rules because their animal
instincts were over powering them. Jack then took advantage of this
and said that all he cared about was fun, hunting and feasts. He told
the others what they wanted to hear and this ultimately was what
allowed him to start his on tribe.
This is relevant to teenagers today because it informs them that there
is evil inside of every man, even in them, and when placed under the
right situation that evil might just come out.
William Golding incorporates a variety of characters to explore
different aspects of the human civilization.
In the novel Ralph is the protagonist. The boy who represents order,
civilisation and is the islands first leader. He tries to establish a
democratic society. However at the start of the book he felt the need
to fit in with the rest of the group; be classified as popular. This
is demonstrated when jack called piggy a fatty and jack said “He’s not