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Lord Of The Flies - symbols.

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Introduction

In the book Lord of the flies, there are many symbols used by the author, William Golding, to represent and compare facts with the world external to the desert island. I have selected a few of these symbols from chapters one and two plus have annotated them to illustrate the correlation between the symbols and their actual meanings. An example of these symbols is the tropical island the boys are marooned on. The island is a microcosm of Earth and represents all the concepts and problems that occur in everyday life, such as arguments and discrimination. There are many displays of differences among the boys throughout the book and in chapter 1 this becomes apparent when the other boys find that one overweight child is called Piggy and start teasing him; "He's not fatty," cried Ralph, "his real name's Piggy!" "Piggy!" This shows that already there is bullying on the island just like the outside world. Also there is the beginning of a democracy in the community as they decide to elect a boss of the group and hold meetings, with the conch symbolizing the right to speak; "Let's have a vote, vote for a chief!" ...read more.

Middle

When the plane that the boys were flying in crashed, it caused an indent in the surrounding jungle the boys call this "the scar". ' A gash visible in the trees; there were the splintered trunks and then the drag,' the scar is also a symbol. I feel the scar is used by William Golding to symbolize the destruction the boys' presence will wreak on the tropical island. A scar is a mark of damage to something that is usually long lasting, so is an appropriate word to use. "You been and set the whole island on fire." The boys also begin to hunt the pigs in the jungle adding even more damage to the island's ecosystem. "We're going to hunt pigs and get meat for everybody." This shows they are affecting the island and the scar is a symbol of destruction to the island by the boy's inhabitancy. In lord of the flies, Jack is symbolized as a typical macho male, who enjoys hunting and slaughtering, not especially because he has to, but for fun. 'Jack slammed his knife into a trunk and looked round challengingly.' ...read more.

Conclusion

Chief Ralph embodies authority as he keeps everyone in line and tells them what they need to do to maintain a sense of humanity. Ralph was elected as he is the most sensible and has the most innovative ideas out of the group. When they find the conch Ralph suggests; "We can use this to call the others. Have a meeting. They'll come when they hear us-" this emphasises Ralph's authority and leadership right from the beginning. Ralph is an important, dominant character throughout Lord of the flies, being the first character to appear in chapter 1 and taking an important role there on. 'Ralph counted.' "I'm chief then." His authority becomes increasingly apparent here, when he tells them he is chief. Ralph's authoritive role often coincides with the other dominant boy, Jack. Although the two are quite similar in ways such as their natural influential ability, the boys often have contrasting opinions, "you and your hunting! We might have gone home" 'the two boys faced each other' the incident where the fire was let out, released the growing tension between Jack and Ralph. All of these quotes and extracts display Ralph's symbol of authority by William Golding. By Tom Reeves ...read more.

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