Explain how Golding establishes the main themes of The Spire through his portrayal of Jocelin in the first five chapters of The Spire.

The bent and twisted hunchback Jocelin is the cornerstone for interpreting and bringing forth the multitude of interesting themes within the novel. Through Golding's experience of World War II, he established many scathing criticisms of humanity in his literature. In The Spire this is represented by the character of Jocelin, a Dean of a nameless cathedral obsessed with the vision of erecting a four-hundred foot spire.

Jocelin is the penultimate antihero, the introduction of the story tells us how "He was laughing chin up, and shaking his head. God the father was exploding in his face." It defies the expectations of what context a Dean would place God into, especially in humour, so very early on into this novel are these very slight and gentle implications of corruption, this is also exacerbated when the slight phallic pun of "Eighteen inches" is joked by Golding, and we get a sense of..."expecting the reverse" in the chapters to come.

Jocelin later lustfully examines Goody Pangall, what is interesting to note is to note is how Jocelin refers to her while looking at her, he mentions her only as "Pangall's wife" which is  incredibly reminiscent of Steinbeck's Of Mice And Men where the female of the story is only referred to as "Curley's wife" and her actual name is not specified, names are quite symbolic in terms of how much value the other characters revere her, and over here in The Spire, Jocelin only seems to associate her as a nameless object, devoid of human definition. When you take away the name of the character, you disassociate that character from the main frame of other characters who actually do have names, and Jocelin plays up further on this, "She is entirely woman, he thought, loving her;" shows also his frame of mind early on, his definition of the characters is placed onto a spectrum, with women this is shown as either "Girl" or "Entirely woman", this then can be taken further to show how Jocelin categorises people around him according to how much pleasure and pain they cause him.

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The presentation of Jocelin up to this point is a sexually repressed Dean, and we have the theme of obsession rising for the first time, however expressed in a Freudian shell that Jocelin's initial sexual innuendos of The Spire is in reality, behaviour stemming from his sexual repression of Goody Pangall. This is just one of many forms of Jocelin's twisted obsession, and that his obsessive thoughts is expressed in many facets of his metaphoric ideology and associations of events and people in the cathedral

Golding portrays this shapeshifting obsessive compulsive behaviour in the actual narrative of the story ...

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