Lord of the Flies Essay

Words: 1909
Pages: 8

eGrant Johnson
Per 4
Final Draft0-
The Allegory of Life
William Golding’s Lord of the Flies repeatedly contrasts with the morality-driven views of the controversial philosopher Frederick Nietzsche. Golding’s allegorical novel tells the story of a group of young boys who remain stranded on an island and left to their own instincts. Golding and Nietzsche would argue the issues the boys face are based on the morality and nature of man. Ralph, the protagonist, is delegated power by the other boys, while Jack, the antagonist, quickly becomes jealous of Ralph’s power. In Lord of the Flies, the conch, the masks, and the “lord of the flies” represent civilization, freedom and evil respectively. Golding supports a Judeo-Christian order, in
…show more content…
The masks take away the boys’ individual identity, allowing them to disobey civilization’s morals while avoiding shame. However, while Nietzsche would approve of their freedom, he would disapprove of the need to wear the masks. In his view, the boys need to embrace their true selves to be free rather than hiding behind the masks. Nietzsche believes that the boys should be yes-saying because they should be strong enough act freely according to their own instincts, without guilt or shame. Golding believes that the use of the masks allows them to hide their shame and also enables them to become savages. Golding thinks that the boys are afraid of showing their shame so they repress it by wearing the masks to avoid the ostracism from society. The masks give the boys freedom, but Golding thinks this is dangerous because too much freedom gives way to instincts which ultimately lead to savagery. While wearing the masks the boys are “…not much better than uncaged beasts…” (Gen. 22. 13). Golding describes Jack, “…His sinewy body held up a mask that drew their eyes…He began to dance and his laughter became blood thirsty snarling” (G 64). Golding attempts to show how the masks affect the boys as they lose touch with themselves. Golding would argue that the boys abandon the need to follow the rules when they wear the masks. Without the masks the boys compulsively