Lord of The Flies - Is Jack Evil?

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Lord of The Flies - Is Jack Evil?


The title says it all, 'Lord of the Flies' in Hebrew is Satan. The evil, the evil within us all.  As we can deduct from this tital the book with have darker elements to the narrative. This book about boys trapped on an island is named after evil incarnate.

Once you start to read the book the title makes no sense, over the first few pages you notice no sinister hidden meanings and evil behaviour on any of the boys part. Yet as you turn the pages a picture is created for you, one of savage behaviour and brutal consequences. This book explores authority and mankind's urges to resort to savagery when there is lack of it. This essay will explore the question,  

"Is Jack evil when he arrives at the island, or does he become evil?"

Jack is a major character of the book, he starts off as a traditional authoritarian figure leading his choirboys along the beach in their robes.

"The creature was a party of boys, marching approximately in step in two parallel lines and dressed in strangely eccentric clothing."

"The boy who controlled them was dressed in the same way though his                             cap was golden"

From the start Jack wields power over people, we have to take this into account when you look at his behaviour later in the book, at the start he is a leader, and Ralph takes this leadership away from him, he offers him a token of friendship 'The Hunters'. This proves to be one of Ralph's greatest mistakes, once Jack controls his choir as a band of hunters he has absolute power and soon turns them against Ralph.


"I ought to be chief, said Jack with a simple arrogance, "Because I'm a chapel chorister and head boy. I can sing C sharp"

"Well then, said Jack "I-"        

His desire to be Chief was clearly evident in his first appearance. When the idea of having a Chief was mentioned Jack spoke out immediately. He led his choir by administering nmdif discipline resulting in forced obedience from the cloaked boys. His moment of triumph Jack is just about to assert his authority when the good natured ralph bumbles in.  This moment is the first clash of power.  The book in its self is one titanic power struggle.  His ill nature was well expressed through his impoliteness of saying,

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"Shut up, Fatty."    

However, despite his unpleasant personality, his lack of courage and his conscience prevented him from killing the first pig they encountered.

"They knew very well why he hadn't: because of the enormity of the knife descending and cutting into living flesh; because of the unbearable blood."

Even at the meetings, Jack was able to contain himself under the leadership of Ralph. He had even suggested the implementation of rules to regulate themselves.

This was a Jack who was proud to be British, and who was shaped and still bound by the laws of ...

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