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Lord of the Flies

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Introduction

Lord of the Flies 'Lord of the Flies' by William Golding describes a group of schoolboys' means of life when they become stranded on a desert island after a plane crash which killed all other passengers and crew, with only vast jungle and sandy shores around them. During their unusual experience, one of the main characters - Ralph - learns thing about himself and the others that no other twelve year old would ever imagine. With "a mildness about his mouth and eyes that proclaimed no evil", Ralph seems the laid-back sort, confident and trustworthy. Although when he first meets Piggy, another schoolboy, this all changes and the immaturity of a typical child of his age shines through. When finding out that his new friend used to be nicknamed 'Piggy' as a result of his short and fat appearance, "he dived in the sand at Piggy's feet and lay there laughing." Ralph thinks of Piggy as a paranoid wimp, and relishes in the fact that they have a whole island to roam around on, with no grown-ups to tell them what to do. ...read more.

Middle

Simon's death was a consequence of Jack's tribe getting overexcited about "the beast" and was a mistaken identity case involving the beach, many spears, and a chorus of youngsters wildly chanting "Kill the beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood! Do him in!" The realisation of the awfulness that occurred affects all of the boys not in Jack's tribe, and in a moment of sheer alarm, Ralph almost snaps: "That was murder." Piggy, now the most faithful and loyal friend Ralph has left on the island, can't bear to even think about it, let alone discuss it: "You stop it! What good're you doing walking like that?" By this time, the relationship between Ralph and Jack has deteriorated so much that bitterness from power-possessed Jack is all that is left. By the end of the novel, it is clear that the relationship between Ralph and Jack has no amiability in it whatsoever. The power and authority that Jack enforces over his tribe portrays him as a king to the reader: "Power lay in the brown swell of his forearms; authority sat on his shoulders and chatted in his ear like an ape." ...read more.

Conclusion

He literally runs into a naval officer and recognition of everything hits the twelve year old. Shock of the circumstances is all too much for Ralph to bear, and he falls to his knees and breaks down. "Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of a man's heart, and the fall through the air of the true, wise friend called Piggy." Ralph takes responsibility for the chaos and collapse of civilisation, as he believes that if he had been a better leader, none of this would have happened. He realises just how far things can go when there is no order imposed, and that he alone couldn't change that. Throughout the novel, Ralph makes a journey towards self-discovery, and witnesses behaviour no other person, like the naval officer, would believe if he explained them. His relationships with the other two main characters influence the horrific events that took place on the island, and at the end of 'Lord of the Flies' Ralph sees that man can lose all sense of civilisation when no rules and order are in place. ?? ?? ?? ?? Nadine Cowan 3/3 25/10/2007 ...read more.

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