William Golding´S Lord Of The Flies: Portrayal Of Evil Within Mankind

1064 words - 4 pages

Edward Morrison, a Canadian journalist and Major General in World War I, once said, “If there is [t]rue [e]vil in this [w]orld, it lies in the [h]eart of [m]ankind.” Essentially, Morrison is saying that there is evil in the world, and it lies within each and every one of us. Morrison’s ideas are reflected in William Golding’s Lord of the Flies. In the novel, a group of British boys are isolated on an uninhabited island, all alone and without any adults. The boys are horrified by a supposed beast, but there is not an actual beast. Soon after, the boys reveal the beasts from within themselves. These beasts cause evil and chaos throughout the island. Throughout the novel, the reader should see that Golding portrays evil as the natural essence of all mankind.
Golding makes it clear that evil is part of all humans through the discussion of the beast. For instance, while the boys are determining exactly what the beast is, Simon contradicts their beliefs by saying that there might not be an actual beast on the island and states that perhaps “[M]aybe it’s only us” (89). Golding allows Simon to see what the other boys have not yet discovered which is that the evil is within them. Golding makes it clear that evil is within each and every one of us by having Simon show the boys that there is not an actual, physical beast, and the only true beast is the one within them. Moments later, Golding has Simon become inarticulate in his effort to express “mankind’s essential illness” (89). Golding is clearly stating that evil is an essence of mankind. When Simon states that maybe the beast is within “us,” he is referring to all of mankind as shown moments later. Another example from later in the novel is when the Lord of the Flies is talking to Simon. The Lord of the Flies states “I’m part of you” (143). Golding has the Lord of the Flies, Beelzebub, show Simon, a Christ figure, that evil is within him. Christ, the savior of all mankind and the purest form of man has evil lurking within him. This should clearly show the reader that there must be evil within him as there is evil within the one man who is supposed to save our entire world.
Golding makes it clear that evil is part of all humans by Jack’s description and desire to kill. For example, when Jack is preparing to go hunting for a pig, he begins to dance and his laughter turns into a “bloodthirsty snarling” (64). Golding has Jack’s laugh change from a normal laugh to an aggressive growl. Growling can be associated with carnivores that have a natural desire to kill for pleasure and food. We humans are also carnivores that have to rely on killing for our own survival. Golding describes this snarling as being bloodthirsty, which shows that man is eager to maim, shed blood, and kill. Soon after Jack’s laugh turns into a snarling, he masks his face with clay and charcoal sticks to conceal his identity. Once Jack paints his face, he “liberate[s]” himself from shame and...

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