Fear of the Unknown
Lord of the Flies
By: Sam Baldwin
Fear is one of the most powerful emotions that control the way any human being acts in certain circumstances. A distressing emotion aroused by impending evil and pain, whether the threat is real or imagined is described as fear. One of many prominent themes in William Golding's novel, the Lord of the Flies, is Fear of the unknown. From the beginning of the novel, the boys fear what they cannot see, the parts of the island they haven’t explored, the mysterious beast, and of course, though they may not realize it at first, they fear the damage they may do to one another. All of these have some “unknown” element to them; they can’t see in the dark, they don’t know what’s on the island, they’re unsure of what the beast really is, and they’re ignorant of the depths of their own violent capabilities. In this novel, the boys become more savage because they fear the unknown; which is the root of the trouble that is caused on the island. The Beast isn't any physical character, Golding uses the beast as a symbol of the evil that exists in all the boys. Before the boys arrived, the island was "pure and clean". However, the boys brought evil to it, and with this evil there was destruction. The boys own irrational fears and blind terrors, release the forces of death and the devil on the island. This fearsome beast initially takes form in their imaginations as a snake-type animal that disguises itself as jungle vines; later, they consider the possibility of a creature that rises from the sea or the more vague entity of a ghost. When they spot the dead paratrooper who has landed on the mountain, the boys feel sure that they have proof of a beast's existence. In fact a beast does roam the island, but not in the form the boys imagine. By the second chapter, fear has worked its way into their society. Johnny says that there is a beast, hearing that “Ralph laughed, and the other boys laughed...
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