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

Compare and Contrast the ways in which Stevenson and Golding present the theme of Evil.

Extracts from this document...


Compare and Contrast the ways in which Stevenson and Golding present the theme of Evil Lord of the Flies, by William Golding was first published in 1954, and is set some time in the future, during a war, on a desert island in the Pacific Ocean, known simply as 'The Island'. (The Strange Case of) Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson is set in London at the time of its first publication in 1886. Both feature as a main theme the existence of good and evil. I will compare and contrast the ways in which each author presents evil characters and situations. First, it is important to contrast the historical context of the novels, so that I can fairly and properly compare them. The Second World War, in which Golding fought, and the Cold War, which had materialised in the 1950's, had an effect on him, in writing Lord of the Flies. This is reflected in the pessimistic view he takes on human nature, after the large number of deaths for no massive gain in the war. When he taught in a boarding school after the Second World War, he probably saw similarities between the powers at war in the world, and what went on inside the school, so forming his opinion about collective evil. ...read more.


Jack, when behind a mask was "liberated from shame and self-consciousness", and it was a "thing on its own", which means that he felt that he was free to do anything with the mask of paint, without fear or reprimand from his own conscience. Both authors employ the use of particularly evil characters. The main such characters in Lord of the Flies are Jack and Roger. Jack is evil because, escaping from society's conditioning behind a mask of paint, his primal instincts take over, and his lust for blood becomes very obsessive. This escalates into a lust for human blood that can only be described as evil. Nevertheless, Roger seems worse. Sam and Eric describe him as "a terror". He likes to torture people, as we can tell from the screams on top of Castle Rock, and is sadistic, enjoying the "possibilities of irresponsible authority" when controlling a murderous rock, and the feeling "a sense of delirious abandonment" when it is set free. These two characters embody the nature that is within us and under the right circumstances can be released, even from the Head Boy of a God-fearing choir school, in Jack. The key evil character in Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is clearly Mr Hyde. ...read more.


Golding uses complex descriptions in setting the scene, which are very graphic, and give the reader a vivid picture of what he saw. In contrast, the dialogue used by such public school educated boys is poor, especially in the case of Piggy. There is much use of slang and mild swearing, and the standard of the dialogue deteriorates with the rest of the story, ending almost monosyllabic. The boys are hindered while on the island by their poor vocabulary and inability to express ideas, and Golding uses it as a device to make sure only Simon knows what he is thinking, and he cannot express his prophetic ideas of evil and the beast. The deterioration of language serves to emphasise the downfall of society. Lord of the Flies is intended for a reasonably well-educated audience because of the long paragraphing, and the depth of symbolism and allusions in the novel, with many complex images of good and evil represented by colours, snakes, certain people, the sow's head, and so on. One example occurs when Simon comes down from the mountain just before his death and says "something about a man on a hill", thus alluding to the death of Jesus Christ. Probably the most significant of these allusions occurs in the title itself. By using the phrase "Lord of the Flies", he links the beast, represented by the sow's head surrounded by flies, to Satan. ...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 Robert Louis Stevenson 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 Robert Louis Stevenson essays

  1. How does Stevenson explore the theme of duality in Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde?

    Gradually however as the two men merge again into one the language of Jekyll changes to the end of the novel; a good example of this change is the way the point of view of the book suddenly shifts to the first person: Jekyll/Hyde and in the way the last

  2. Discuss Stevensons portrayal of the nature of good and evil and the dual nature ...

    Jekyll could be interpreted as the influence of nature on Victorian society, an old-fashioned traditionalist being poisoned by new ideas and new beliefs. The murder of Sir Danvers Carew is an important part of the book, and Stevenson's description adds to the sense of confusion and fear that is created.

  1. Show How Stevenson Through Themes, Language and Setting Creates a World of Double Standards ...

    Primitive behaviour is perhaps the easiest component to pick up on, this component links directly to Mr Hyde as he is portrayed as primitive from the moment he arrives in the storyline. The novella goes out of its way to paint Hyde as animalistic.

  2. Treasure Island

    in a flash is on top of the man stabbing him to ensure he is dead. In the mean while Jim is watching this in absolute horror and shock. He doesn't know what to do so he runs away. Silver has showed us that he can be a lethal killing machine and nothing will stop him.

  1. 'How does the Author, Robert Louis Stevenson, present Victorian attitudes to the nature of ...

    (Bottom of Page 78) whenever people see Hyde or come by him in the streets they have a strong impression of sinister and indescribable deformity. The evil of Hyde greatly contrasts the good of Jekyll; respectful and respected upper class citizen of his own social trio; Utterson, Lanyon and himself, all, good qualities.

  2. How does the struggle between good an evil in humannature reveal itself in the ...

    It is shown that Jekyll would live in the new town area with big clean houses. But Hyde lived in the dull upstairs apartment in a brothel. It is the contrasts of these two areas, which made him, think of his theory on good and evil but suggests where you live can represent it not just humans.

  1. Emily Smith Compare the author's treatment of the theme of good and evil in ...

    However there are some places where he feels safer, for example in the conservatory Kingshaw goes there because he can be alone and in the dolls room he feels safe and special there because the dolls cannot harm him and he has power over them for once.

  2. Compare the ways Harper Lee and RL Stevenson present towns of Maycomb and London ...

    The characters in "To kill a Mocking Bird" overall seem on the surface to be good, honest hard-working people who are friendly and take everyday problems in their stride. This conceals, however, a deeply engrained hatred towards Negroes and their way of life based on prejudice.

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