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BY: William Golding
When a group of children become stranded on a deserted island, the rules of society no longer apply to them. Without the supervision of their parents or of the law, their primitive human nature comes out. William Golding portrays this primitive human nature very exceptionally in the novel "Lord of The Flies."' This interesting book it somewhere about 223 pages, and was first published in 1958. The key summary of this book is that a group of English schoolboys who are from 6 to 12 years old crash-land on an island somewhere in the Pacific. This could have been a dream come true for the boys; no teachers, no parents and no rules that tell them what to do or not do, but this was nowhere near a dream come true, matter in fact it was a nightmare.
There is a pretty decent range of characters that play diverse roles in the story but the main characters in the book are: Jack, Ralph, and Piggy. Jack Merridew began as the arrogant and self-righteous leader of a choir. The freedom of the island allowed him to further develop the darker side of his personality as the Chief of a savage tribe. He eventually took power through brute force, and toward the end had no humane feelings what so ever. He was completely a savage. Ralph on the other hand started as a self-assured boy whose confidence in himself came from the acceptance of his peers. He had a fair nature, as he was willing to listen to Piggy. He was softer compared to jack, and also became pretty dependent on Piggy's wisdom throughout the book. Piggy himself was an educated boy who had grown up as an outcast. Due to his academic childhood, he was more mature than the other boys and retained his civilized behavior. But his experiences on the island gave him a more realistic understanding of the cruelty possessed by some people, and this was due to his maturity level. He was actually able to observe what was going on with everyone.
The setting of this book is basically when an airplane load of school-age boys are stranded on a deserted tropical island after their plane is accidentally shot down during World War II. They are completely by themselves on this island on the Pacific Ocean. The island, on which they are on, is a tropical island, full of trees, and greenery.
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The plot unfolds as soon as the plane crashes on the island, and since there are no adults, the boys try to organize themselves with a chief, hunters, and a few people to watch a signal fire for any ships that might pass. Factions develop with the original group and the hunters. The boy who is chosen to be the chief is Ralph. As the leader of the hunters, Jack, creates his own group, Ralph grows and matures as a result of his internal conflicts. At the start of the novel, Ralph is very immature. Like most children, he is excited to find out that there are no adults to watch him and tell him he couldn't do something. At the moment Ralph was told this information from his friend Piggy, he takes off all of his clothes and starts to swim in a pool of water on the beach. When Ralph does this, he is like a child left alone to play his favorite games. He does not care about anything at first because he has a strong belief that his father, who is in the navy, will send someone to rescue them.
In the meantime, Ralph and Piggy find a conch shell. If you blow into a conch shell a certain way; in makes a loud, low-pitched sound. Piggy tells Ralph about this, and Ralph uses the sound from the conch to call an assembly. All different aged boys appear on the shore where Ralph blows the conch. When it is thought that all of the boys are there, they begin to have a meeting. First, they elect a chief. They choose Ralph as their leader over a boy who was in the choir and his old school named Jack. After Jack losses, Ralph makes Jack the leader of the hunters. As Ralph tries to make law and build his society, all of the others seem to loose interest in helping one another and go off on their own and play. This happens when Ralph tries to build shelters; everyone builds the first one, then only four build the second one and only Ralph and a boy named Simon build the third and final one. Ralph is currently in the maturing process. He doesn't understand how to be a good leader, but he is respected by everyone one the island.
As Jack becomes better at hunting pigs, he gets more followers. There comes a time in the novel when Ralph's tribe is only Simon, Piggy, and identical twins whose names are Sam and Eric. In the novel, the are commonly called "Samneric" because they do everything together. When Jack's tribe of hunters kill a pig, they invite Ralph and his group to eat in their feast. After the feast, at night, there is a barbaric dance that contains the words, "Kill the Pig! Cut her throat! Spill her blood!" in the song. The chant eventually turns into, "Kill the Beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood!" as Simon comes out of the forest and onto the beach. They think Simon is a beast the lives on the island and they kill him. A few days later, Jack and his hunters sneak up on Piggy and Ralph and take Piggy's glasses to be used to start a fire. When Piggy and Ralph go to Jack's camp to get Piggy's glasses back, one of the hunters pushes a boulder over the cliff. This boulder lands on Piggy, killing him instantly. The gargantuan rock also shatters the conch shell. Jack then tries to kill Ralph. He chases Ralph to the beech where Ralph runs into a British Naval Officer. Not until this is Ralph fully mature. He was reminiscing about Piggy and Simon and how he and all of the other kids on the island became so barbaric. This is basically the plot of the story.
In a book like this, honestly you cannot have a favorite scene, though I thought that this scene in the book is what turned everyone barbaric. This scene was the turning point for the characters in the book to turn barbaric. It all started when Jack was chosen to keep the fire going. Jack on the other hand decides go hunt for meat instead of tending toward the fire. His pursuit for killing a pig is symbolizing a devilish desire built into human nature. While he was out pursuing the pig, the fire went out. This symbolized the fact that Jack's devil like desires led him away from hope of being rescued and deeper into despair and turning into a barbarian.
Jack represents a Satan like, deathly force. The blood that he wallows in is a further representation of savageness. After his first kill, "Jack transferred the knife to his left hand and smudged blood over his forehead as he pushed down the plastered hair," he unconsciously imitates the ritual of the tribal initiation of the hunter, whose face is covered with the blood of his first kill.
Jack then successfully convinces many big kids and little ones to come along with him and join him in a tribe of savages. These savages have face-paint on, which makes them anonymous. This anonymity allows for each tribe member to do things he would not have normally done because of the fear of being judged by society. They basically had no shame left. So they went out, killed a pig, acted as if they were raping it, and cut off its head. They put the head onto the end of a spear and stuck it into the ground. This initiation scene is what transformed most of the kids into their barbaric nature, and that is why it is an important scene, worthy of mentioning, for it represents the turning point in the book.
The lesson of the book in my opinion is there is no society without laws. Without laws, and a mentor, human's worst emotions come out. The devil within arises, and everything goes into chaos. A mentor, a grown up, who can keep the boys in line, is what the boy's in "The Lord of The Files" needed. They needed someone to teach them proper behavior. Someone who can tell them what is right or wrong, and without this person, hell happens. Humans worst barbaric behavior arises, and the rest is pretty much is in Gods hands.
This book is worth recommending because it educates the reader about human nature in aspects to most people, never imaginable. This book is also worth recommending because it will give you a new perspective on human nature, that you really never observed before. This book may not be worth taking the time to read, because of it nature itself. Some people might just find that this book is sick, nasty, and mental traumatizing. Though overall, this book is a very interesting book to read, and the people that I recommend a book like this too, would probably be a mature group of people. The reason for that is because they are not easily disturbed, by what they read.