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What Has Lord of the Flies To Say About Civilisation and Human Behaviour?

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  • Essay length: 988 words
  • Submitted: 11/07/2002
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GCSE William Golding

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What has Lord of the Flies to say about Civilisation and Human Behaviour? Do you agree with Authors point of view?

Lord of the Flies appears to be simply a story about how a group of marooned school boys follow their daily lives on a Pacific island. The story is used to demonstrate the author's theory about the basic egotistic and selfishness of the human being. William Golding, the author of the novel, was 43 years old when Lord of the Flies was first published in 1954. This was a time of great uncertainty and political discontent and he would have been heavily influenced by his experiences in World War II. Golding takes a very pessimistic veiw of humanity throughout the novel, believing that humans are based upon pure evil.

When the schoolboys first arrive on the island, they immediately look for a way to maintain law and order since there are no grown-ups. Civilisation cannot be an individual thing and therefore the boys want to belong to a group with social responsibility, with a leader. Ralph becomes leader, after being chosen by the boys in a democratic vote: "Let him be chief with the trumpet thing"

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