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The lord of the flies - What impression have you formed of Jack?

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What impression have you formed of Jack? From Jack's very first appearance in the novel we recognise him as a natural leader. These attributes that define him stem from his former position of "chapter chorister and head boy", he is comfortable with authority and enjoys wielding it: The tall boy shouted at them, "Choir! Stand still". Jack is gifted with "simple arrogance" and great pride, he is a very demanding and ruthless leader, and in this way his methods are the natural opposite to those of Ralph. Jack is dictatorial and aggressive. He has a strong desire to lead and this he asserts through his prowess as a hunter. This uncompromising lust for recognition and fear craves the loyalty of the boys. This fear ensures loyalty and faithfulness. The boys are well led by Jack though his aims didn't take into account the long term needs of the boys, he was still able to keep the boys in check and keep them under his absolute control. For instance Jack does not entertain the idea of rescue and fire but controls the group extremely effectively during hunting. ...read more.


They can be-what do you want them to be?" However due to the vast differences in character this equality is not maintained. Ralph's leadership was through democracy though Jack's was through the threat of violence and under the shadow of fear. The varying methods of leadership also influence the way each of these characters treat the rest of the boys. Ralph always explained what he was doing and what he hoped to achieve- he actually allowed the boy's to give ideas, this occurred when he adopted Piggy's idea of speaking only when holding the conch. Jack however dictated his plans without regard for the future; an excellent example of this is when he orders the entire forest to be set alight so that he would ultimately be able to catch and kill Ralph. The differences in character are further highlighted in their relationship, as it is one of continual change throughout the novel. It starts off as a friendship; "Jack and Ralph smiled at each other with shy liking." However this is not always the case. ...read more.


His lust after physical violence causes Jack to be accustomed to using such brutality towards any other living being. The reason for the strong desire Jack feels towards hunting is due to the fact that it gives him power over a life which Jack thrived after. Golding emphasises on this by giving Jack the surname Merridew meaning 'Lord of the place'- this is particularly significant as Jack wanted to be called this right at the opening of the novel "Why should I be Jack? I'm Merridew." As a result of the great difference in character it is evident that we see that Ralph's leadership is positive, which leads us as the reader to have a negative view of Jack. Golding intended this as, if Jack had been the only source of leadership on the island we may have sympathised with him because of the hardship-managing children are. However because Ralph portrayed an ideal role model in comparison to Jack causes us to see him in a darker light. Jack has from the beginning been an authoritative and fixed minded person. Jack is an uncaring, cunning savage, who having been used to having his own way, lusted after power with bloodthirsty ruthlessness that enabled him to attempt murder. Ruth Chelva 11S ...read more.

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