William Goulding Lord Of The Flies Quote Analysis

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In the 1954 novel Lord of the Flies, author William Goulding imparts his opinion of humanity on readers through his tale of boys stranded on an island. Throughout the story, readers follow a group of boys who have crash landed on an uncharted island during World War II. The boys experience disputed governance and their descent from an orderly society into savagery. As the story progresses, it is clear that Goulding’s view of humanity mirrors that of Thomas Hobbes. Hobbes believed that people are inherently evil and need a strong monarch to rule and control them. Goulding makes clear his opinion of humanity through the conversion to savagery as they are separated from society. He also shows that a strong monarch is needed to rule the boys through …show more content…

Goulding shows this outlook by showing the boys as they detach from civilization. When they are no longer bound by the social contract of civilization, where people give up the state of nature to live in an organized and structured society, they accustom themselves to a savage lifestyle. “The desire to squeeze and hurt was over-mastering” (Goulding 115). This quote takes place when the boys are hunting the pig and refers to Ralph’s feelings. He is no longer bound by a social contract and displays his innate evil. When he is away from society for so long, he reverts to his natural evil ways, which reflects Hobbes’ philosophy. However, the transition to savagery was not immediate. In the beginning of the novel, the boys are still controlled by their civilized instinct. “Roger gathered a handful of stones and began to throw them. Yet there was a space round Henry, perhaps six yards in diameter, into which he dare not throw. Here, invisible yet strong, was the taboo of the old life. Round the squatting child was the protection of parents and school and policemen and the law” (Goulding 62). This quote concerning Roger throwing stones and purposely avoiding Henry shows that the boys still retain their connection with civilization. Nevertheless, as the novel progresses, this connection stretches thin until the boys are killing for fun and seem incapable of comprehending rules of …show more content…

At the beginning of the boys’ time on the island, they form a democracy that was ruled by Ralph. He called for order and did not enforce any of the rules he put in place. “Not for these things, But to put things straight” (Goulding 79). This quote shows the order in Ralph’s rule. It also shows that he is the voice of productivity and civilization on the island. Compared to Ralph, Jack is savage and bloodthirsty and is much more powerful and able to control the boys. The boys needed a strong monarch to control them and as Ralph was not strong enough to control them, his rule crumbled to make way for Jack’s reign. Jack does not believe that order and logic is the right way to rule. “He says things like Piggy. He isn’t a proper chief” (Goulding 126). To Jack, strength and fear are more important to leadership and because Ralph, like Piggy, uses rationality and reason, he is not suited to be the boys’ leader. Goulding demonstrates his belief that people need a strong monarch to rule them through his illustrations of a disputed

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how william goulding's view of humanity mirrors that of thomas hobbes, who believed that people were inherently evil and needed a strong monarch to rule and control them.
  • Analyzes how goulding's view of humanity mirrors that of hobbes, who said that people are inherently evil.
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