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Examine the Framework of Society That Is Adapted By the Boys In 'Lord of the Flies'

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Examine the framework of society that is adapted by the boys in "Lord of the Flies." Why does it disintegrate? What are the wider implications for contemporary society? "Lord of the Flies" was first published in 1954. Its author, William Golding, was born in Cornwall in 1911, and bought up in Wiltshire. Golding's father was a teacher and a socialist and his mother actively supported the campaign for votes for women, so from an early age Golding was aware of the social and political systems that were in force and their influence on people. During the Second World War Golding joined the Royal Navy and took part in the sinking of Bismark and the Normandy on D-day. Golding's experience of war had a profound effect on him and his view of the world as it taught him how savage and cruel people could be to one another. Although he was appalled by the evils of Nazism and the Third Reich, he said in an interview in 1963 that everyone was capable of inhumanity, not just the German or the Japanese. He saw Nazism as an evil political system, and so horrifying that it could not be explained through reason alone. He looked for an explanation in the nature of human beings, and their capacity for brutality and inhumanity in "Lord of the Flies." The novel itself is set on an imaginary, remote island. A plane, evacuating children from a war zone, crashes and the survivors are a group of boys: Ralph, Jack Merridew, a fat, shortsighted boy who goes by the name of "Piggy", Roger and a number of other boys of various ages. The boys are bought together by the sound of a conch, which Ralph finds and blows. The boys have meetings and lay down a number of rules rules. They decide to make a fire, which acts as their signal for survival. ...read more.


Golding uses metaphors to describe the fire i.e. an animal. At first the fire is described as a "bright squirrel", which creates the idea that the fire is good, but is later described in terms of wildlife which creeps as a "Jaguar", which shows that it has become dangerous. Consequently, the forest becomes savage with smoke and flames. Overall, Ralph is a very strong democratic figure who tries to reform civilisation on the island and constantly reminds the boys of who they are. i.e. British boys who have to behave in a dignified, honorable and civilised way towards one another. However, Ralph's civilised way of living shatters when Jack, leader of the hunters, gets bored with having rules to follow. "Bollocks to the rules!" Jack to Ralph, (Chapter 5). Furthermore, Jack's rise to power is autocratic as he brings himself to power. He is dictatorial in what he says and uses the desires that the boys feel to get them to join him, he promises them two things: fun and hunting. At this point in the novel, we can see how Jack is trying to take advantage of the fact that there are no adults on the island to follow or listen to. As the novel progresses, the reader views a changing Jack. In chapter 4, he has painted his face with clay and charcoal in order to comaflouge himself whilst hunting. The mask offers an external picture of what is happening to Jack, as he is regressing to a primitive form. When Jack sees his reflection he sees an "awesome stranger" which delights him because he feels with the new mask that he has been released from the civilised world. As Jack leaves the civilised world we see Ralph's and Jack's characters becoming worlds apart as they confront each other. Their feelings and their ideas about what is important are completely different. The reader begins to see the formation of two societies: Ralph's society who want to be rescued and Jack's community who want to have fun and hunt. ...read more.


Hitler's education did not go as he had wanted it to and he was left homeless. During 1907 and 1914, Hitler learned to hate, and most of all, he hated the Jews and the Communists. He decided that the Jews were inferior and the Communists would ruin Germany. Hitler's popularity continued to grow and in 1933, he became the chancellor of Germany. From that point onwards he came to greater power, until he became in charge of the whole of Germany. People voted for Hitler because they thought that he could save them and release them from the jeopardy they were living in. However, many of them were wrong as they soon found out things were not getting any better! After loosing the Second World War, Hitler shot himself. To conclude Hitler's rise to power is very similar to that of Jacks' who used similar techniques. Also, Ralph can be seen as Winston Churchill as they are both good leaders who want the society to work together in making peace. Winston Churchill came to power in 1940 and he led Britain into was against Germany in Word War II. He never gave up and always supported and encouraged everyone to take part in the war, which they won. Churchill fought against the extremism of Hitler to create a peace-loving society, just as Ralph fought against Jacks' dictatorial ways until the end of the novel. Furthermore, Jack is an example of how, without the restrictions of adults or society, certain people revert to primitive desires and actions. Another moral that can be learnt from the novel is that everyone of us, regardless of our colour, race or religion, has evil within us, which develops as we grow with the influences of society. However, we must all struggle by not letting it conquer us or develop in such a way that it harms others. Furthermore, we must be able to recognise those figures in society that are evil and deal with them in the right and proper way. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 1 ...read more.

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