The Line between Democracy and Totalitarianism in Lord of the Flies Essay

The Line between Democracy and Totalitarianism in Lord of the Flies Essay

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Golding immediately shows how voting procedures of a democratic society can help stop evil from taking over. During the first encounter between Jack and his choirboys and Ralph and his group, it becomes clear the differences in between both groups. Jack, during the first meeting, yells at the boys to “Stand Still!”(Golding 20) and even when “one of the boys flopped on his face in the sand” he makes the others choirboys move “the fallen boy to the platform and let him lie” (Golding 20). With this brief peek into the leadership of Jack, it is evident that Jack has no concern for the common men in his choir, furthering the illusion of his dictatorial skills. The theme of leaving the masses of common citizens uncared for, while the elites are given exclusive powers is a major notion of the totalitarian government. When these boys see how mistreated Jack’s choirboys are, the vote for chief is affected. When Ralph asks, “Who wants Jack for chief?” the choirboys “With dreary obedience [they] raised their hands”(Golding 23). Then, when Ralph asked, “Who wants me? Every hand outside the choir except Piggy’s was raised immediately. Then Piggy, too, raised his hand”(Golding 23). Evident here is how the public and Golding perceive the two contradicting types of government. This tiny glimpse shows that even when a dictator has all the power over his citizens, he cannot beat a democratically elected leader in an election. The undertone of this situation shows that citizens prefer a democratic leader that they elect than somebody who attempts to usurp the throne. While this was only the first time the two sides meet, the two sides only become more distanced by every time they meet.
Furthermore, Golding uses frequent meetings to further es...


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... until “the prodding became rhythmic”(Golding 182). Then, “Roger advanced upon them as one wielding a nameless authority” (Golding 182). Samneric, in this situation, are illusions to the political opposition that are present in most totalitarian societies. Samneric are treated as political prisoners and bullied into keeping their mouths shut about their views and into accepting the new leader’s way of ruling, which is with an iron, unyielding fist. Golding, in this situation, tries to show the reader how a totalitarian government does not allow any opposition to the official government’s idea. If a person disagrees with the government, then it is better to keep that opinion to their self or face severe backlash from the government. All in all, Jack’s newly increased tribe only happened due to Jack using fear and brutality as a means to keep his tribe in line.

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