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Lord of the flies - Referring to three episodes in the novel, analyse the boys regression into savagery and explore what Golding reveals about mankind's essential nature.

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Introduction

"In 'Lord of the flies' Golding is clearly seeking to explore fundamental human nature and this is apparent from the way in which he portrays the slackening hold of civilisation on the boys can the consequent atavistic regression. By reversing mankind's evolution, he strips the boys to their essential nature." Referring to three episodes in the novel, analyse the boys regression into savagery and explore what Golding reveals about mankind's essential nature. 'Lord of the Flies' was written by a man called William Golding and was first published in 1954 and shocked the nation, as the thought of the boys killing each other shocked the nation. The basic storyline is about boys ranging from four to twelve, their plane crashes and they are stranded on an island where they slowly descend to savagery. The story mainly focuses on the elder boys, the main characters are Ralph, Piggy and Jack. The boys live in a world that is in a nuclear war. Golding was affected by the nuclear bombs on Nagasaki and Hiroshima and this book showed that everyone had this evil and he stressed this point by making the character's children. ...read more.

Middle

And the fact that they are going to leave some of the kill for the pig shows that they have descended to savagery so much that they have given into superstition and irrational fear, and that they seem to think that the beast is real and that in leaving a sacrifice it will mean that the beast will leave them alone. They have lost the chains of civilisation, and the only thing that makes them the least it civilised is the fact that they are wearing their black caps The pig that they have chosen is one that has piglets so in killing her they are also condemning the piglets to death, so they are causing unnecessary hurt on the pigs as they could have chosen a pig with no piglets, this is not rational as this kills of the future generation and if the continue like this then it means that they will run out of food. When they are hunting it says that Jack was 'happy, and wore the damp darkness of the forest like old clothes' this tells us how often jack has been hunting and how easy and at peace he is even though they are going to kill the pig. ...read more.

Conclusion

But Piggy's death is something that was calculated and no-one cold excuse what Roger had done. This episode shows us that in human nature the strong can prey on the weak with no civilisation and no rules, and with no rules there is anercy. And that there are different types of people, those that succumb to their evil desires or those that resist the evil. It also shows us group mentality that people can be like sheep or follow those because they want safety. Golding wrote this story to have many meanings both moral and religious. I find myself agreeing with Golding on some aspects of the novel. I believe that mankind doesn't have an essential illness but that we do have the ability for great evil but also great good it is up to us to choose. I think Golding was very clever to use children instead of adults as this gets his message across to the reader better then if it was adults because everyone, and especially when this book was first published, associates children with goodness purity and innocence. Overall I thought this was a very thought provoking book. ...read more.

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