An Analysis of Lord of the Flies by William Golding

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Throughout The Lord of the Flies, the author shows how different Simon is from the rest of the savages on the island. He is much more innocent and pure than the others and has a religious demeanor. Light, very commonly a symbol of holiness and purity, is used quite often during Simon's "funeral". In the last four paragraphs of chapter nine, "A view to a death", Golding makes clear the use of light imagery to suggest the apotheosis of Simon.

During chapter nine, the sky and water are used to convey a sense of innocence during Simon's glistening funeral. For example, the air becomes clear as the rain ceases, indicating a calm and peacefulness. When the "silver tide" comes in and washes away his blood and "streaks of phosphorescence" mend his battered body, it is as though Simon's body is being prepared for ascension into heaven. "Lamps of stars," "bright constellations," and the moonlight provide much radiance. In addition there are brilliant flashes of lightning from the still lingering storm. The luminous sky provides light while the clear, silver water works on restoring Simon's body after he has been savagely killed.

Simon's body and the creatures around it also show his holiness. Light images of the creatures that surround Simon glorify his body, and as light falls on his corpse he is transfigured into an icon of expiation. Also, the water covers Simon in a "coat of pearls" and "creatures" (interpreted to symbolize angels) begin to spread a layer of silver over him. The apotheosis of Simon is complete, as he becomes completely silver. As Simon's body is carried out to sea, the angels create a halo (phosphorescence) around his head and attend to his wounds.

Simon indeed was the purest and most innocent boy on the island; his character a true symbol of religiousness. At the end of the story this becomes very obvious as Golding uses light imagery for an eloquent funeral to properly end Simon's life.
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