Democracy to Dictatorship in Lord of the Flies Essay

Democracy to Dictatorship in Lord of the Flies Essay

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Democracy to Dictatorship in Lord of the Flies

     Lord of the Flies by William Golding is a novel that represents a microcosm of society in a tale about children stranded on an island. Of the group of young boys there are two who want to lead for the duration of their stay, Jack and Ralph.  Through the opposing characters of Jack and Ralph, Golding reveals the gradual process from democracy to dictatorship from Ralph's democratic election to his lack of law enforcement to Jack's strict rule and his violent law enforcement. 


Upon the arrival of the boys to the island Jack immediately found himself in the center of a power struggle. Although the conflict was brief, there was still a very obvious confrontation between Jack and Ralph. Once the boys had assembled themselves there was an election to see who was to be chief. Despite the fact that Ralph was voted leader, the desire to be in command never left Jack. Jack already had some leadership skills, being head choirboy at his old school, and he continuously challenged Ralph.  The greatest source of conflict between Jack and Ralph was the debate over the necessity of maintaining a fire. Ralph felt that it was necessary to keep it burning at all times while Jack believed that hunting pigs and getting meat was much more essential.


Ralph was elected shortly after their arrival to the island, but his time in power came to end quite gradually. He tried to run his group through a democratic type system in which all major decision were first discussed at an assembly before they were put into action. At these assemblies his views were questioned not only by Jack, but by the other boys as well. Even the ideas that the assembly could agree on usually weren't pu...

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...rd. Lord of the Flies. By William Golding. New York: Berkley, 1954.

Gunton, Sharon R., ed. Contemporary Literary Criticism. Vol. 17. Detroit: Gale, 1981. 68 vols.

Magill, Frank N., ed. Masterplots. Vol. 2. Englewood Cliffs: n.p., 1949. 3 vols.



1. Your paper could have been stronger had you used more quotes.  Each time you make a specific point concerning the novel, you should back up your point by using a specific quote from that novel.  That way your readers have proof that your point is valid.

2. Also when quoting you must always place in parentheses the name of the author and the page on which the quote can be found.  This way your readers can look up the quotes for themselves.

3. Quotation marks ("") should be uses to surround the whole quote while apostrophes ('') should be used to surround inner speeches of quotes.


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