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William Goldings Lord of the Flies portrays a society not founded on a bedrock of rules which succumbs to evil.

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Introduction

´╗┐The Dangers of Being Consumed by Evil Civilized society is maintained through strict adherence to rules, rational behaviour, and repression of personal desires. Order can more readily prevail if a society strives to be civilized. However, where order fails, it allows evil to permeate the society. William Golding?s Lord of the Flies portrays a society not founded on a bedrock of rules which succumbs to evil. The lack of authority in Golding?s society causes the stranded British boys to plummet into an anarchic lifestyle full of violence and hate. Jack, the initiator of this downfall, introduces the boys to savage behaviour through the formation of a religion rooted in the manifestation of the beast. Although Jack is the primary implementer of evil, the true evil within the novella is intangible ? human nature itself. Golding uses Jack to exemplify the darkness that exists in the human heart and its ability to corrupt the soul if not checked by reason and restraint. In Golding?s Lord of the Flies, Jack is tainted by the unrecognized evil on the island, completing his fall from innocence and plunging him into destruction and savagery, resulting in his corruption. Jack?s fall from innocence begins with his uncontrollable urge to hunt and continues with the manifestation of the beast. ...read more.

Middle

Golding replaces Jack?s name with Chief within the narration, perpetuating Jack?s fall from innocence. Golding leaves no doubt that anarchy has spread on the island, with Jack becoming a symbol of evil. When Jack is questioned, ?a savage raise[s] his hand? (177) to speak. Golding also transforms the identities of the tribe members, establishing their loss of innocence, as well as establishing them as violent, vicious pawns of Jack?s coercive rule. Furthermore, Jack?s use of violence clearly signals the transition of power and the spread of destruction and savagery. His vicious and belligerent ways establish a sense of fear within the boys. Jack sends a strong message to his tribe when ?he [gets] angry and [makes] [his tribe members] tie Wilfred up? (176). Jack beats one of the boys for no apparent reason, to strike fear into the hearts of the rest of the tribe, making them conform to his anarchy. Through violence and disorder, Jack further strips away his innocence and embraces his corrupted nature. Through the use of the beast, Jack forms a religion rooted in ritual and savagery. The foundation of this religion is based on the boys? deep fear of the beast. ...read more.

Conclusion

Simon?s murder marks Jack?s entire loss of innocence. Once Jack has committed the taboo act of murder, there is no turning back from his corruption. His primary tool to justify Simon?s murder is the beast. He states that the ?[beast] came disguised? (177) as Simon. Jack characterizes the beast as an immortal and shape shifting creature. By doing so, Jack is creating an excuse to kill again. Jack does not feel any apprehension about murdering again, continuing his fall from innocence. Simon?s murder ultimately marks the point of no return in Jack?s corruption. In Lord of the Flies, Jack is stained with the innate evil of humankind, triggering his fall from innocence and journey towards savagery and corruption. Golding portrays Jack?s corruption through his coercive rule where violence, war, and deviance are emphasized. Jack initiates the anarchic lifestyle on the island through the manifestation of the beast and the formation of a cult-like religion. Finally, Golding utilizes Jack to depict the evil within the human soul and its ability to be unleashed if not restrained by the rules of society. An ordered social structure enables civilized behaviour to prevail, whereas the lack of it allows for evil to penetrate the surface of human nature and begin its manifestation. ________________ [1] Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. London: Faber and Faber, 1954. 51. ...read more.

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