William Golding and Human Nature Essay

Submitted By zebraskinface
Words: 812
Pages: 4

'Lord of The Flies', written by William Golding is a novel which explores the cruelty of human nature. In the middle of a war, a plane evacuating a group of schoolboys from Britain is shot down over a tropical deserted island. As tensions run high between the group of pre-adolescent males, the foundation begins to crack and true color's start to show. Golding shows this through different techniques such as character choice and symbolism. Golding uses the character of Piggy to exploit the cruelty of Jack, and show the cruelty of the group as a whole. Piggy is the intellectual poor sighted, over weight, boy with asthma. He is the most physically vulnerable of all the boys, despite his greater intelligence. Piggy's first sign of intelligence is when he notices the conch. Piggy comes up with the idea to use the conch-Ralph is the one to blow the conch-to gather all the other boys on the island. The shell effectively is the glue when it comes to the boys' meetings, for the boy who holds the conch has the right to speak. Although Piggy is the most intelligent, rational boy in the group, his glasses represent the power in there society. This symbolic significance is clear from the start of the novel, when the boys use the lenses from Piggy’s glasses to focus the sunlight and start a fire. When Jack’s hunters raid Ralph’s camp and steal the glasses, the savages effectively take the power to make fire, leaving Ralph’s group helpless and Piggy temporary blind. Piggy is so intent on keeping civilization on the island that he assumes Jack's raiders have attacked Ralph's group so that they can get the conch when of course they have come for fire. Even up to the moment of his death, Piggy's mind doesn't shift in response to the reality of their situation. He can't think as others think or value what they value as he sees the real picture and doesn't live in a ideal world yet reality. His approach to life is the way an adult would view the world, he thinks everyone should share his values and attitudes as a matter of course. Speaking of the deaths of Simon and the littlun with the birthmark-assumed to have died in the forest fire, he asks "What's grownups goin' to think?", as if he is not so much mourning the boys' deaths as he is mourning the loss of values, ethics, discipline, and decorum that caused those deaths. This implies there decent into anarchy, and shows the cruelty of human nature. Golding uses the character of Ralph to represents leadership of a democracy, that soon turns to a dictatorship. Ralph is the athletic, and could potentially become a boxer when he grows up. Elected the leader of the boys at the beginning of the novel, Ralph is the primary representative of order, civilization, and productive leadership in the novel. While most of the other boys initially are concerned with playing, having fun, and avoiding work, Ralph sets about building huts and thinking of ways to maximize their chances of being rescued. For this reason, Ralph’s power and influence over the other boys are secure at the…