• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Comment on Golding's use of symbolism and imagery in "The Lord of the Flies"

Extracts from this document...


Kyle Fahy 10 PR Comment on Golding's use of symbolism and imagery in "The Lord of the Flies" "The Lord of the Flies" was first published in 1954 by Faber and Faber Limited. It was written by William Golding (1911-93), who decided to write it because he wanted people to know the true nature of human beings. It is significant that it was published in the post war era because people still shared conflicting opinions about the war, which were reflected by the conflicts and skirmishes between Jack's tribe (who shared a totalitarianism view) and Ralph's tribe (who were democratic and preferred law and order). In this essay, I plan to concentrate my views about Golding's use of symbolism and imagery, and how it is important in a book like, "Lord of the Flies". I will also comment on how Golding writes the book on more than one level (the literal level, the symbolic level and as the ongoing battle between democracy and totalitarianism). The book, which is set during the Second World War, begins with an aeroplane crash landing on an isolated island after being shot out of the sky by a German plane. ...read more.


On the symbolic level it can be seen as the ongoing battle between good and evil, with a boy that truly represents one of these in each tribe, Simon (purity and innocence) in Ralph's tribe and Roger (who is inhuman and capable of murder without feeling guilty) in Jack's tribe. Finally the book can be interpreted as the feud between democracy and totalitarianism. A "symbol" is an object that can represent something other than itself. For example, the conch can be seen as a symbol for order and democratic principles such as, equality and free speech. When the conch is first discovered, it represents a part of the natural world that is untouched and unspoilt by people. Eventually, it becomes a symbol of authority and common sense. When the conch is destroyed, it represents the destruction of order and rational thought and behaviour. Traditionally the conch was used by the Greek mythological God, Triton to calm or raise the seas. This is like the way in which Ralph uses it to command respect and order from the other boys; "Ralph took the conch from where it lay on the polished seat and held it to his lips; but then he hesitated and did not blow. ...read more.


Purity on the other hand is represented by white and silver images such as the phosphorescence that is present when Simon is carried off to sea, and we finally realise his innocence in the novel. Each of the above images contribute to my understanding of "The Lord of the Flies" because the images of violence and destruction back up Golding's belief that evil is the one true cause of human nature. The images of nature, on the other hand, help to represent that, although humans are ultimately evil, there is still hope for mankind. The imagery of colour helps me to see that, despite the odds, innocence and purity will eventually triumph over evil as it did in Simon's heart. In conclusion to my essay, symbolism and imagery are used constantly throughout "Lord of the Flies" in a manner that represents the majority of humans as evil and black hearted, but, despite that image, all humans will eventually succumb to the innocence and purity of nature. Imagery and symbolism are important to the understanding of the novel because they are the true cause of the depth in the novel and, without them, Golding's view about human nature could not be put across in this novel as effectively or powerfully. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE William Golding section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE William Golding essays

  1. Lord of the Flies - The symbolism of the conch, its importance in the ...

    to speak, he steals fire as it is practical and necessary to cook the meat he hunts and then he takes away the other's only chance of fire-Piggy's glasses. When Ralph and Piggy go to castle rock to reason with Jack and his hunters Ralph tries to blow the conch

  2. Themes, Motifs, and Symbols - Themes are the fundamental concepts addressed and explored in ...

    In a world where such a thing is barely possible, Simon is both natural and good. Simon's confrontation with the Lord of the Flies, then, is more than a Christian allegory representing the meeting of Jesus and Satan. Simon, unlike Jesus, is not a supernatural being, and none of the

  1. The Conch - "Lord of the Flies"In William Golding's novel "Lord of the Flies" ...

    Although it is dead, it is proud and defiant in its speech. He occasionally uses simile. One occasion occurs in the first passage when Golding compares the sand with a road saying, "...there was a strip of weed-strewn beach that was almost as firm as a road."

  2. How does Golding use the language to show Piggy and Simon are never fully ...

    without this right it is doubtful that Piggy would stand up for himself. Piggy lives for the rules and is the only one who truly lives by them. The conch exploding into "a thousand white fragments" can be seen to symbolize the destruction of Piggy's confidence and also can be

  1. "Discuss William Golding's use of symbolism in 'Lord of the Flies'".

    not just because he can't see properly, because he feels exposed to people's abuse and interrogations. "He took out his glasses and held them out" (p14). Piggy's spectacles are also a sign of intelligence and society. Something that exists in society can still exist on the island, while a hint of society is still there.

  2. Analysis of Lord of the Flies.

    chance to escape the island; his bloodlust and thirst for power have overwhelmed his interest in civilization. Whereas he previously justified his commitment to hunting by claiming that it was for the good of the group, now he no longer feels the need to justify his behavior at all.

  1. How does William Golding use language in his description of the island and the ...

    He leaps onto the sand commanding the others "Do our dance! Come on! Dance!". The boys follow and Jack can claim victory over Ralph for leadership. Now the lightning is "flashing", Golding has made it bigger and more frequent, making the intensity of the atmosphere escalate further.

  2. One Bright Light

    question even eases to exists, and that too, goes the same with your problems, the solutions are created before the problems themselves, my young son, never forget my words ok?" He would always answer his mother question with a big smile and a yes mummy, he wished for those days

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work