Essay PreviewMore ↓
William Golding's allegorical Lord of the Flies portrays the struggle of a group of British boarding-school boys who are marooned on an island in the tropics. They quickly band together and form a democratic system to govern themselves. The job of chief is quickly given to Ralph, which infuriates Jack, who already possesses the qualities of a skilled leader. Jack's anger increases, and he continually pushes the boundaries of his role in the group. Eventually, when the boys refuse to relieve Ralph of his position, Jack declares himself the leader of a new tribe, beginning the deterioration of the democratic society and the birth of a new autocratic tribe. Although a democracy with rescue in mind is the obvious choice for civilized British boys, Jack's savage, heathen society prevails as the boys' regression from civilization shows that evil is stronger than good.
At the outset of the novel, Ralph forms a democratic society that functions smoothly, as the boys' instinct is still to behave according to the moral responsibilities of their upbringing and to live by rules. ."..there was a space around Henry, perhaps six yards in diameter, into which he dare not throw. Here, invisible yet strong, was the taboo of the old life" (62). Roger, although barely able to comprehend civility, still lives by the rules imposed upon him from birth, which helps to keep the democracy together. Also, Jack still shows a great deal of civility at the beginning of the story. "Ralph, I'll split up the choir--my hunters, that is--into groups, and we'll be responsible for keeping the fire going--" (42). Because at this point he is relatively content with his role as leader of the hunters, he contributes to the group by offering to keep the fire going.
However, when the boys' obsession with meat becomes foremost in their thought, the society formed by Ralph is challenged and begins to deteriorate. "Things are breaking up. I don't understand why. We began well; we were happy. And then--" (82). Because the boys' attention is focused on obtaining meat, they are no longer happy taking orders from Ralph. They do not want to bother with the upkeep of the fire, and would rather focus their energy on hunting instead of getting rescued. Although Jack feels fulfilled in his role as leader by providing meat, his gaffe is taking the choir boys away from the fire.
How to Cite this Page
"Law Vs. Anarchy in "Lord of the Flies"." 123HelpMe.com. 26 Feb 2020
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Fun and Murder in Lord of the Flies Lord of the Flies is a story of hardships, death and ultimately, survival. The island on which the boys are on presented many difficulties. In this situation, there was no time for fun and games, work was much more important. The group consisted completely of pre-pubescent young boys and the thing that destroyed their democratic ways was the allure of having lots of fun, swimming, feasts and other enjoyable activities. If the splitting of the groups, i.e when Ralph and Jack went their separate ways, the bloodshed would have been prevented.... [tags: Lord Flies Essays]
953 words (2.7 pages)
- 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, the primitive nature of the boys surfaces. Consequently, the boys live without luxury that could have been obtained had they maintained a society on the island. Instead, these young boys take advantage of their freedom, and life as they knew it deteriorates. Lord of the Flies is influenced by the author's life and experiences. Golding's outlook on life changes, due to his heavy involvement in W.W.II, to his current philosophy that "The shape of society must depend on the ethical nature of the individual, and not on any... [tags: Lord of the Flies Essays]
914 words (2.6 pages)
- 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.... [tags: Lord Flies Essays]
1098 words (3.1 pages)
- ... While the boys stranded on the island begin with the basis of a plan to keep order, as time progresses, they are faced with conflicts that ultimately brings an end to their civilized ways. Initially, Ralph, the assumed leader, ran a democratic-like process on the island; however, later in the story, Jack, one of the boys, realizes that there are no longer any consequences to their wrongdoings for the reason that there was no control. This ties in with the ideal that moral behavior is forced upon individuals by civilization and when they are left on their own, they return to their fundamental instinct of savagery.... [tags: english boys, humanity]
615 words (1.8 pages)
- In the book Lord of the Flies, at the end of the book, it said that “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”. This quote is very important and tells us the theme of this nasty novel. The Lord of the Flies is an allegorical novel and it is about schoolboys (aged thirteen and under) who was stranded on an island without adult supervision. At first, they were happy because they were free from adult supervision and knew they could anything.... [tags: Theme, Novel Analysis]
1085 words (3.1 pages)
- Civilization vs. savagery, reason vs. impulse, order vs. chaos, law vs. anarchy, or the broader heading of good vs. evil. This is a dilemma every single human being goes through on a daily basis. Weather we do what we know is right, live by rules, act peacefully, follow moral commands and proceed with the values we were grown up to respect or give in to our savage/ animal side, the instinct to gratify one’s immediate desires, enforce one’s will, and act violently to obtain supremacy over others.... [tags: rules, morals, symbols]
916 words (2.6 pages)
- The Lord of the Flies The adventure novel, The Lord of the Flies, was an epic tale that depicted the different facets of the human spirit. It was written by William Golding in the 1950's and recieved many awards. It was declared the "Outstanding Novel of the Year" by E.M. Forrester. The author did in no wat mean for this story to be biographical, but Mr. Golding depicted well the many different aspect of human nature. The book has been described as "provacative, vivid and enthralling," but Time and Tide said it best when they wrote, “It is not only a first-rate adventure story but a parable of our times." The novel took place on an island probably somewhere... [tags: essays research papers]
1571 words (4.5 pages)
- The adventure novel, The Lord of the Flies, was an epic tale that depicted the different facets of the human spirit. It was written by William Golding in the 1950’s and recieved many awards. Idt was declared the “Outstanding Novel of the Year” by E.M. Forrester. The author did in no wat mean for this story to be biographical, but Mr. Golding depicted well the many different aspect of human nature. The book has been described as “provacative, vivid and enthralling,” but Time and Tide said it best when they wrote, “It is not only a first-rate adventure story but a parable of our times.” The novel took place on an island probably somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic.... [tags: essays research papers]
1566 words (4.5 pages)
- Lord of the Flies The main theme of Lord of the Flies is that moral nature is not instinctive in mankind. There is a capacity for evil in all people, and their morality is superficial. Nonetheless, it is this moral integrity that must continue in order for a person to be ethical, for society to be maintained, and to keep society from falling in on itself. Society holds everyone together. Without the rules and the structure, evil in everyone becomes more prominent, and ideals, values, and basics of right and wrong are forgotten.... [tags: essays papers]
1599 words (4.6 pages)
- II.A.Discuss the protagonist of Lord of the Flies in terms of flatness or roundness. What purposes are served by his flatness, if any. Discuss any two minor characters in similar terms. For each, justify the degree of flatness or roundness in terms of the character’s contribution to Lord of the Flies. Ralph, a charismatic twelve year old boy is the protagonist in William Golding’s Lord of the Flies. The author describes him as being "fair haired" with "the body and shoulders of a boxer" while still having a "mildness about his mouth and eyes that proclaimed no devil." These facts immediately tell the reader that Ralph represents good in thi... [tags: essays research papers]
1457 words (4.2 pages)
Jack's newly formed tribe succeeds because the boys find that hunting and playing games is more fun than rules and keeping a fire going. "I'm not going to play with you any longer. Not with you--...Anyone who wants to hunt when I do can come too." "I seen them [the boys] stealing off....the same way as he did himself..." (127). When Jack leaves the group, he asks the other boys to join him in his hunting. They too begin to realize that playing and hunting is much more enjoyable than laboring over a fire. But although Jack is the chief of this new tribe, he longs for total power, and as a result, develops into a brutal character.
As Jack becomes increasingly wild, barbaric, and cruel, the other boys begin to fear him. Adept at manipulating the other boys, he uses their fear of the beast to keep them in his power. "Tell us about the snake-thing. Now he says it was a beastie. A snake-thing. Ever so big. He saw it" (35). Although the boys joined Jack's tribe for protection from the beast, Jack plays on the boys' fear and begins to controls them in a dictatorial fashion. "'Kill the beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood!" (138). He is compelled to do this because his megalomaniac passion for complete control of the island overpowers his instinct to be civilized. The boys' fear of the beast is great, as evidenced in the scene when Samneric spot the beast. "It was furry...The beast moved too--There were eyes--teeth--claws--... The beast followed us" (100). Because Jack is so skilled at frightening them, and because they live under immense stress, the boys are jumpy and their imaginations are exceptionally vivid. This factor allows Jack to keep the boys in his control. "They [Jack's tribe] spread out nervously in the forest...He giggled and flicked them while the boys laughed nervously at his reeking palms" (133). The members of Jack's tribe live in fear of Jack, their totalitarian leader, unlike Ralph's dissolving tribe where democracy kept everyone equal. Although they long for their old life, "[We should be] looking like we used to, washed and hair brushed..." (155) the boys hunt alongside Jack to quell the fear he has instilled in them.
Although Jack's tribe is more compelling for boys tired of receiving orders and maintaining a fire, Ralph's party is the moral superior of the two; as well as potentially making rescue possible while it existed, the egalitarian civilization kept the island from chaos. Jack's tribe triumphs over Ralph's representative democracy because the boys are no longer governed by the rules and morals of civilization. The boys, influenced by Jack, became more and more primal, pandering to the most primitive of human behaviors and allowing corruption to prevail, leading to the eventual failure of the whole system.