Political Symbols In William Golding's "Lord Of The Flies". In This Essay, The Conch, Jack, And Ralph Are Used As Symbols Of Politics.

781 words - 3 pages

William Golding's "Lord of the Flies" is filled with numerous symbols. The literary definition of a symbol is a person, place or object that represents more than what it is physically. The author uses a variety of these to assist the reader in relating aspects of the narrative to places or ideas in modern day society, as well as infusing the story with greater depth and meaning. Throughout the novel, Golding effectively implements three distinct politically related symbols; the conch, Jack and Ralph.On the island, the conch represents law and order as well as the freedom to speak one's mind. Whoever possesses the conch is the only person permitted to talk at the time,"'Let him have the conch!' [shouts] Piggy. 'Let him have it!'"(pg.39). Piggy is admonishing one of the older boys to let a younger boy have a chance to speak. This quote show that Piggy embraces the ideology of a democracy and feels that the littleun' ,in this case, deserves the right to speak given his democratic belief that the litteuns' matter just as much as the older boys do. The littleuns' contributed to the voting in of Ralph as their leader in the first place.The idea of the conch as a device for allowing someone to have the floor or speak their mind, is still utilized by some tribes around the world. Instead of a conch, a stick or stone can be used to control who is speaking. In "Lord of the Flies", when the conch is blown, it is a signal for the group to assemble at the platform to discuss important things such as the building and maintenance of the signal fire, the pigs and the beast of which they are terrified. As the island civilization deteriorates and the boys crumble into savagery, the conch shell loses its power and influence among them. When the conch is destroyed at Castle Rock, it symbolizes the end of civilized behavior on the island. Ralph uses the conch to maintain order on the island, but when disorder consumes the boys, the conch is destroyed.The person who represents dictatorship in the novel is Jack. He uses his power over the hunters as a form of leverage to take over complete leadership of the tribe. Jack wishes to hunt, kill and...

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