What Is The Importance Of Simon In the novel 'Lord of the Flies' by William Golding?

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What Is The Importance Of Simon In The Story?

In the novel ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding, Simon plays a very important part. He is constantly shown to be the Christ-like figure among the boys and he performs acts in the story that could be compared to acts from the bible. He is all goodness and proves this in good deeds, which are performed, at times, in the face of adversity from the other boys.

It has been suggested by some that Lord of the Flies is just an adventure story. However, it could be argued, through the representation of Simon’s character, that it is a story that depicts a battle between good and evil. This theme is one that was influenced by Golding’s own experiences of atrocities in World War II.

When Simon is first introduced to the story he is marching in the choir. He makes a significant entrance when he faints as the choir arrives at the assembly platform. Jack, the head chorister, describes him as ‘always throwing a faint’. He then carries on explaining the places the choir have sung in, where Simon has fainted; ‘Gib, Addis and at Matins over the precentor’. Through the story Simon shows to have an illness because he faints or passes out several times. It is probably epilepsy. Jack, who enjoys pointing this out to others, sees his faints as a weakness.

When Simon wakes he looks at Ralph. Then he tells everyone that his name is Simon. Ralph is looking for an extra person to go with him and Jack on an expedition round the island. Ralph chooses Simon. Simon gets up and this is when he is really shown to the rest of the boys. He is described as ‘a skinny vivid little boy’. This description tells us how vulnerable Simon is, and also that he is something very different from the rest of the choir. When Ralph chooses Simon, this shows that Ralph has taken a liking to Simon already, and this friendship proves to be very valuable in the rest of the story. Immediately, not only has Simon been linked to good, but also so has Ralph. Ralph and Simon prove to be a significant force in their confrontations with Jack

Throughout the story Simon is kind and thoughtful. When Jack insults Piggy, Simon always tries to manipulate what Jack has said into a compliment. Simon also confronts Jack in acts of courage to help Piggy. One of these times is when Simon goes to Jack after Jack has taken Piggy’s specs, and he takes them off Jack and returns them to Piggy. He then defends Piggy, when Jack is trying to convict Piggy of not helping to start the fire. Simon says ‘We used his specs…he helped that way’. This shows that he has some affection and sympathy for Piggy.

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In the novel, Simon’s character is a Christ figure. Everything he does is good. All the other boys on the island have the secret ‘inner evil’, which only Simon can fight against. This ‘inner evil’ is William Golding’s idea as to why people do evil things. He believed that when you are born you have a certain amount of good and a certain amount of evil inside you. He believed that as you go through your life you would show bits of evil at any time. The only problem is that the evil would be totally out of your control. ...

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