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Lord of Flies

Lord of the Flies by William Golding published in the 1950s, tells the story of a group of kids who get marooned on an island after a plane crash. Left to fend for themselves, at first, they try to make the best of it. But without adults around, things start to get…wild. You’ll have to dive in yourself to see how human nature plays out when civilization gets stripped away. Golding for sure had something to say about what lies beneath our veneers of respectability!

Summary of Lord of the Flies

“In this timeless tale, a planeload of young children between the ages of 6 and 12 is abandoned during a war on a distant tropical island. At first, they have fun exploring and playing like it’s a big adventure. Two boys, Ralph and Piggy, try to keep things organized with rules and a signal fire. But soon cliques form as the chubby Asthmatic Piggy and bespectacled Ralph but head with the handsome hunter Jack.

Jack wants to be chief and stops the signal fire. Without grown-up guidance, instincts take over and ‘uncivilised’ acts like hunting wild pigs for sport turn sinister. Tensions rise till outright tribalism emerges and a frightening savage named Jack rules with fear. Dark deeds unfold till Ralph’s gang must fight for their very lives. Makes ya think what lurks just below the surface, eh?”

Major Characters of Lord of the Flies

Ralph

As the elected ‘chief’ at the onset, Ralph represents order and reason. He insists on discipline like the signal fire and fair democratic votes. However, as Jack challenges his authority Ralph becomes emblematic of the fragility of civilization. While initially commanding respect, his dirty-blond hair earns mocking nicknames, symbolising how easily hierarchical structures break down.

In the concluding confrontation, Ralph’s desperation to rekindle the fire highlights his role in representing humanity’s potential for rational thought even in our darkest moments. His ultimately futile struggle against the savage chanting horde emphasizes Golding’s message about civilisation’s thin veneer.

Jack Merridew

Jack starts as a respect-seeking hunter but metamorphoses into a tyrannical dictator as he acquires more loyal followers. This portrayed the seductive nature of power and how it can corrupt previously “moral” individuals.

Jack’s abandonment of the conch shell for force epitomizes the novel’s notion that might eventually supplant right in a state of nature. By systematically eroding the remnants of order, he plays the archetypal role of Golding’s assertion that innate evil, not circumstance, drives societal devolution.

Roger

As a quiet yet consistently brutal entity, Roger demonstrates how cruelty may lurk beneath placid exteriors. His sadism toward the young twins crystallizes humanity’s capacity for unprovoked violence when inhibitions are removed. Ultimately, Roger can be seen as the personification of inherent human savagery underneath politeness.

Minor Characters of Lord of the Flies

Samneric

The identical twin’s Sam and Eric highlight the developmental psychology concept of crowd thinking. Initially meek individuals, they quickly slavishly follow the dominant Jack and mimic his uncivilised behaviours. This underscores how easily impressionable young minds can be swayed into harmful collective mindsets.

That Sam later returns to his “singing” self while Eric remains with Jack symbolizes how external influences can reshape core personalities during formative years. Samneric, therefore, serves to demonstrate the malleability of human character when deprived of moderating guidance.

Piggy

As the representative of logic and reason through his insightful dialogues, the asthmatic Piggy has no physical prowess. This renders him an easy scapegoat and victim, with his death a metaphor for the potential fragility of intellect when faced with brutality. Additionally, the symbolic shattering of his spectacles underlines how civilization’s rational foundations can be easily destroyed without consensus and cooperation between contrasting facets of human nature.

The Littluns

The nameless small children denote innocence corrupted. Their reliance on the older boys as caregivers causes them to implicitly mirror increasing antisocial behaviours. In falling prey to Roger’s sadism, the littluns demonstrate humankind’s capacity to normalize all evils once exposed to recidivism without repercussion.

Conclusion

Lord of the Flies explores humanity’s dark side. With civilization stripped away, basic instincts emerge. Power corrupts as order succumbs to fear and division. A sobering read as humankind teeters between reason and brutality.

 

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iqra
iqra
Hello everyone, my name is Iqra Amjad and I'm a SEO expert and WordPress developer with over 5 years of experience under my belt. I absolutely love working with websites and helping business owners improve their online presence through strategic content creation and optimization. My team and I have helped many clients rank higher on search engines and generate more traffic through our unique blend of technical SEO practices and high-quality, original content. Whether you need a full site audit, content writing services, or custom plugins developed, I can handle any project with my expertise and attention to detail.

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