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What view of mankind does Golding portray in Lord of the Flies?

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English Coursework What view of mankind does Golding portray in Lord of the Flies? This essay will explore the psychology and thinking behind the characters and writing of the novel 'Lord of the Flies'. Overall, it will answer the question; 'What view of mankind does Golding portray in Lord of the Flies?' From soon after its discovery, if it was 'discovered' at all, the beast becomes more than just a thing on a mountain (its most predominant form), it becomes a major symbol of mankind, and its psyche. Throughout the story, the beast takes on many more forms than the previously mentioned appearance. Once as a 'beastie', seen in the forest by the smaller children. This actually turns out to be the creepers. Sometimes as a large figure that falls from the sky and lands on top of the mountain. This is simply a dead parachutist, but it is left alone by the boys (apart from by Simon, and one expedition by three boys), and is feared greatly by the inhabitants of the island. ...read more.


Without the basic laws of society, the boys broke down into savagery, seemingly in no time at all. Near the end of the story, the very last signs of intelligence and democracy are destroyed simultaneously - the conch and Piggy. Fire may be the only thing that drives some of the people to carry on surviving in this story. Later on in the story, even though fire stands for survival, the boys forget about survival, and the only thing they say is 'fire'. This maybe the only thing in Ralph's mind that keeps him sane, over the course of his time on the island. The hope of fire and rescue could have been what originally broke up the inhabitants of this island into a tribe of survival and fire, and a tribe of hunting and adventure. The further the plot develops, the more fire is forgotten about (except by Ralph) along with the hope of rescue. This leads to two possibilities and questions; Are the boys so engrossed in savagery and socio-politics that they have simply forgotten about the fire? ...read more.


All in all, Golding's view of mankind in 'Lord of the Flies', is one of a base human nature. The entire story is a true, and much more realistic interpretation of what would have really happened on 'Coral Island'. The story refuses to show a very well acted, patriotic performance by these boys. Its shows much more realistic actions. The boys revert back to a savage and unruly way of life, fending for themselves, killing one another, and creating war. The great contrast in this book comes at the very end: It is the difference between the smartest and most idiotic characters in the book itself. The most intelligent people are Piggy, for his intellect, and ability to see things clearly, and Simon, with his ability to see what is really wrong with the island, to tell the beast is not a physical thing, and to have the courage to see that the beast from air was no god at all. On the other hand, the most naive, idiotic individual is most definitely the sea captain, with his belief that nothing has gone wrong on this island, and that these boys have put on a 'jolly good show'. Liam Allen 10E ...read more.

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