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Explore the presentation and significance of the events in the final chapter of Golding's 'Lord of the Flies'.

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Introduction

Explore the presentation and significance of the events in the final chapter of Golding's 'Lord of the Flies'. 'Lord of the flies' is about a group of boys whose plane crashes down on a deserted island. At first the boys are relaxed and free and enjoy the beauty of the island however through the course of the novel their attitude and behaviour turns into something darker and sinister, and slowly as order is lost they become cold and savage like. In the final chapter Ralph is left alone, all the rest of the boys have joined Jack's tribe, Sam and Eric have been captured, and piggy has been killed. Ralph finds a place in the forest to nurse his wounds and eat some fruit. He realises that Jack will never leave him alone and he needs to find a good hiding place. He heads back to Castle Rock and sees two 'savages' guarding it, but then realizes they are actually Sam and Eric. He approaches them but they tell him to go away, in fear that jack might see them talking to him. They tell him that Jack plans to "hunt" him in the morning, and something about 'a stick sharpened at both ends'. Ralph tells them about his hiding place. The following morning he awakes to hear jack asking the twins if they are sure, and gathers that the twins have told jack about his hiding place. ...read more.

Middle

One of the main themes in this novel is Irony; there are several examples of this in the final chapter. The fire is a considerably important one. It was started by Jack and his tribe of 'savages' to force Ralph out of his Hiding place so that they could capture and kill him, and it caused a lot of destruction however The fire and smoke is what attracted The Naval officer to the island and subsequently led to the boys being rescued. Next, the statement the Navel officer makes when he sees the boys with their spears and painted faces, "Fun and games". He assumes that they have all been having fun together and enjoyed their time on the island, when actually it has been quite the opposite. Furthermore he says, "I know. Jolly good show. Like the Coral Island." The coral island is a story written about a group of boys who are put in the same situation but react in completely the opposite way. In his novel Golding has decided to personify innate evil in the form of some kind of beast or "Beastie" as the young boys call it in the novel. However the 'Creature' the children fear and believe to be the beast is actually a dead parachutist who has drifted onto the island. Thus This brings in the idea that in actual fact Golding may be trying to communicate a deeper meaning, and the evil that we should fear most is Innate evil and ourselves - humans. ...read more.

Conclusion

This may seem like a livelier ending to the novel then the cynical events which took place before, though looking at it from another point of view you can see that conceivably Golding is in actuality trying to show that they are just being rescued from the small island but are being taken back to the world in which a war is currently under way, and where the same destruction and disorder is taking place but on a much larger scale. The last few lines Golding leaves the reader with effectively convey his message, "Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of man's heart, and the fall through the air of the true wise friend called piggy". 'The darkness of man's heart' is referring to the idea of innate evil, and original sin. The talk of Piggy's death shows that Ralph is finally beginning to understand and realize Piggy's true worth. The end of innocence tells the reader that as a result of all that has taken place on the island the young boys have lost their innocence, and they are no longer children. In conclusion, the language used in the last chapter and the string of events that take place effectively ties the entire story together, and is particularly significant because it leaves the reader with Golding's message, showing that the boys are being taken from one war into another, making life a vicious circle depicts Golding's cynical and pessimistic outlook on life. ...read more.

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