Following Instincts in Lord of the Flies by Golding

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Be civil, or be savage, the conflict between the instincts, stuck in the mind of boys who arrive at an unknown island after a plane crash. In many parts of the book Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, the lost boys face an inner conflict between their instinct to be civil, and their instinct to be savage. Some conflicts are faced in the novel throughout different scenes, such as; playing around, jealousy, hunger, mistrust, and death. Both the main characters, Ralph and Jack, are used as excellent examples to portray this idea of civil and barbaric, this comes as the group of boys separate. Because Ralph and Jack were on odds since the beginning, the group of boys eventually separates, giving them the choice to choose their own leader. Some ingenious boys allow themselves to have fun and become savages instead of keeping their civil instincts, causing Ralph to struggle against Jack and his savages, the ones who let the savage inside them take over. Shortly after the boys’ rough arrival at the unknown island, Ralph blows a conch to summon all the boys for a meeting. Ralph reminds them that they must all work together and collectively to be able to create a good society. But as time passes by, without the education of adults, the boys, especially the younger ones, begin to lose their instinct to be civil. The younger boys, instead of working together and hard to re-create the society they have lost, they begin to follow their instinctive drift to be savage and play around. “That little ’un that had a mark on his face–where is–he now? I tell you I don’t see him.” The boys looked at each other fearfully, unbelieving. “–where is he now?” Ralph muttered the reply as if in shame. “Perhaps he went back to the, the–”Beneath them, on ... ... middle of paper ... ...eir instinct to be savage, the tension in the story rises. The deaths of Piggy and Simon are examples of this. “Ralph wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of man’s heart, and the fall through the air of a true, wise friend called Piggy” (Golding 284), a quote in the book in the end of chapter 12, is a very deep quote. Here, William Golding expresses the darkness in the human heart; as Ralph was saved right before his death on the island, he thinks about how the savage instinct took over the boys’ souls. By the end of this novel, we open our eyes to realize how inadequate savageness becomes to these children, blinding them from their own civil instincts. Which later on appears to be restored after the officer makes them realize the terrible things they had done. Works Cited Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. New York: The Berkley Publishing Group, 1954.
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