William Golding´s Lord of the Flies: Man, Bees, Honey, and Evil Essay

William Golding´s Lord of the Flies: Man, Bees, Honey, and Evil Essay

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“There is no good and evil, there is only power and those too weak to seek it” ― J.K. Rowling. In William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies, a group of schoolboys end up stranded on an uninhabited island which leads to a struggle for power and survival. The author argues that man is naturally evil; however, the characters Ralph, Simon, and Roger suggest that they were molded into their state of being.
Ralph, the leader of the boys throughout most of Golding’s novel, sets up a prime example of what benevolence a human being can have; however, this is a result of the conditioning that he endured, not as a quality he was born with. In Fire on the Mountain, the boys are discussing the courses of action that need to be taken to ensure the group’s survival. During this time, Ralph proposes that “[the boys] must make a fire [so they] can help [ships] find them” (38). The mere action of Ralph considering building a fire to get the boys rescued is one that defies any trace of evil. Moreover, the fact that this action is not only benefiting him, but rather the entire group, portrays some sort of empathetic side of Ralph as opposed to the narcissist side that Golding would attempt to show if Ralph were to be evil. The reason why Ralph has not turned into a conceited individual would be a result of his training from the neutral “state of nature.” Before arriving on the island, it is probable that Ralph’s life was controlled by his parents’ rules over right and wrong. Because he cannot differentiate the two, he was unknowingly conditioned to perform good deeds instead of bad. Thus, when Ralph suggests to build a fire, he does not know that he is performing an amiable action because it is part of his regular routine. Ralph was born into a neutr...

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... has some form of empathy by not throwing rocks, but later on is influenced to do otherwise. Jack, the most power-hungry person on the island, convinces Roger to regress into savagery, to “have fun,” and to make it tolerable for him to throw rocks (150-151). An authoritative figure needs to be present in order for one to accomplish a goal, just like hunting, and building fire as well as shelter. Jack acts as this power in the case of Roger by persuading him that “having fun” is key on the island. In having fun, events may have a disastrous effect, which were the parameters present in the death of Simon. “Evil” roots when one is mislead and is not present directly at birth like Golding argues, one is molded into the position because one has no way of knowing right from wrong. When Roger aimed the rock at Piggy at Castle Rock, he did not aim to miss, he aimed to kill.

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