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Explore the Significance of Simon's Death in Lord of the Flies.

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Introduction

Explore the Significance of Simon's Death in Lord of the Flies. The characters in this story are thrown into a world of their own with no parents, no structure or laws and no protection from their own primitive instincts. There are many ideas about society and the nature of man represented in the novel. The theme of inherent human evil battling with essential human goodness, as represented by Simon. His brutal murder by the other boys indicates the scarcity of that goodness amid an overwhelming abundance of evil. The death of Simon is a turning point in "Lord of the Flies". It represents the completion of their degeneration from civilization to savagery. Simon is kind, thoughtful, sensitive, introvert and helpful by nature; he has a friendly aura about him that is recognised by Ralf as soon as they meet. Simon is used to represent what is good about the boys. Simon feels at home with the nature of the island, it seems to accept him and he is in harmony with his surroundings. Simon exhibits a number of contradictory characteristics. He is community spirited and helpful when building the shelters with Ralf, yet on occasions is solitary and reclusive. ...read more.

Middle

Golding uses the death of Simon in the novel to represent the boy's completion of their degeneration from civilization to social breakdown. It is the final step in the revolution from the rules of society to savagery. It represents human struggle and conflict to uphold the rules. Before his death there was the clash between the impulse to obey rules, to behave morally and to act lawfully, and the impulse to seek brute power over others, to act selfishly, to gratify ones desires and to indulge in violence. In chapter 4, Roger is purposely throwing stones at a little boy called Henry, 'Yet there was a space round Henry, perhaps six yards in diameter, into which he dare not throw. Here, invisible yet strong, was the taboo of the old life. Round the squatting child was the protection of parents, school and policemen and the law. Rogers arm was conditioned by a civilisation that knew nothing of him and was in ruins'. The death of Simon is significantly the last step the boys take from the chance to return to normality and the transition to uncontrolled brutality. Simon and the other characters importance in this 'transition' is portrayed in the way that the book is written. ...read more.

Conclusion

Group violence had been accepted by the boys, this led to the true colours of individuals. The boys were overcome by their savage side and there tribal instinct took the better of them. Simon's death makes Ralph realise what is happening, he knows it was not an accident; they are loosing touch with civilisation and responsibility. Golding uses Simon to show that when we are in trouble, we are likely to turn on the people that we do not understand. Simon is unlike the others thoughtful, sensitive and intellectual, he is a rather mysterious character who plays a key role in the supernatural side of the story along with 'spooky noises from the jungle' and his weird visions. After Simon's death, any trace of rules and resemblance of society that had been taken to the island had gone. This left the path open to the vicious murder of piggy and the final man hunt for Ralf. Simon's death is of utmost importance to the novel as a whole. It changes the structure of the system of authority on the island and it removes the only person who might reveal the fact that the beast is a figment of their imagination and so therefore ridding the island of the boys fear. Charlie Oliver 11H ...read more.

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