Corruption vs. Civilization in Lord of the Flies

Topics: The Lord of the Rings, William Golding, Lord of the Flies Pages: 3 (1266 words) Published: June 1, 2008
Corruption vs. Civilization in Lord of the Flies
Every now and then, one finds themselves taking a deeper look inside of their soul, often times resulting in the discovery of an inner being. This inner being is perfectly depicted through the lord of the flies. Contrary to the boys’ beliefs, the lord of the flies, or in the novel the symbol of the “beast”, is not “something you could hunt and kill” (164), but rather a spirit that dwells inside of a soul, and slowly seduces one into complete and utter savagery. In the novel, Lord of the Flies, William Golding gives the reader a glimpse into a society composed of a group of young British boys, all raised in a civilized and orderly manner, that find themselves stranded on a deserted island. Fighting for survival, many of the boys surrender to the Beast that engulfs them. Others, like Ralph, find themselves in a much more complex and compromising battle- one that takes place inside the mind. In his novel, Lord of the Flies, William Golding uses the motifs of the pig dance, the conch, and the masks to convey the theme that man becomes a corrupt and savage being without a strict system of order and civilization.

By dancing and singing to celebrate the brutal murdering of a pig, the boys enter into a society, or even a cult, surrounded by sadistic and brutal thoughts. The first time the boys perform this ritual, Golding describes their actions as “relieved and excited…making pig-dying noises and shouting” (81). Clearly, the boys feel a rush of exhilaration and excitement when they escape their civilized manner and become a member of this vicious sacrament. These feelings serve only to propel them deeper into this cult, as one can see in their future “pig dances. Later in the novel, Golding describes Ralph’s feelings during the next pig dance, writing that “the desire to squeeze and hurt was overwhelming” (130). Here, it is obvious that even one of the most civilized boys on the island can still be overcome with this...
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