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The Descent Into Darkness Essay

947 words - 4 pages

The desire for power can often lead to one going outside the accepted boundaries of society in order to reach his or her goals. In William Golding’s novel, Lord of the Flies, readers are exposed to a group of young boys who all express varying characteristics as a result of being removed from society. The story begins when the boys crash land on an island in the Pacific Ocean and are left to fend for themselves without the assistance of adults. A boy named Ralph calls the boys to a meeting and the oldest of the boys, Jack, challenges him for the position of leader. As the story progresses, Ralph and Jack’s conflicting morals split the boys into two groups that fight for dominance on the ...view middle of the document...

Jack takes his hunters and moves to the other side of the island, while Ralph attempts to maintain civility. No longer does Jack only want the choir boys to follow him but he also wants to control everyone else, he’s entered his dictatorial stage. "'Fear can't hurt you any more than a dream. There aren't any beasts to be afraid of on this island....Serve you right if something did get you, you useless lot of cry-babies!'" (82). Jack explains that the only thing the boys have to worry about are tangible dangers, not their imaginations. By saying this, he also hints that he’s one of the true dangers on the island. This gives him power over the little ones through telling them they’re weak and authority over the older boys by showing that he isn’t afraid of the island. Not only can Jack lead through fear but also through his ability to control the hunters. The hunters are at Jack’s disposal and Ralph knows that his group can never win in a fight against them. "’Kill the pig, cut her throat, spill the blood'” (69). Jack leads this chant when him and his hunters take down a pig. Golding shows that Jack has moved to a position in which the hunters almost worship him and his acts. Ralph now knows that Jack is too far gone to attempt to bring him back to a semi-structured life on the island. The feeling of power that Jack get’s from the hunt fully breaks him away from the thought of being rescued and now he only wants to hunt. This is the final step in Jack’s removal from civilized society and his full embrace of the savage...

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