Lord of the Flies

Topics: Psychology, Personality psychology, Sigmund Freud Pages: 5 (1620 words) Published: February 5, 2013
Psychological Insights

Psychological Insights about Lord of the Flies

Psychological Insights
Sigmund Freud’s personality structure is used throughout William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies. Each character has the personality trait of Freud’s Id, Ego and Superego structure. Their personalities are challenged in the story due to the theme of a deserted tropical island. The 3 main characters minds are challenged the most in the story because Ralph and Jack are supposed to be leaders. Ralph only wants what is best for the boys and Jack only cares about hunting and surviving. Golding uses Freud’s personality theory to explain the personalities of the main characters. Ralph is the Ego, Jack is the Id, and Piggy is the Super-Ego.

Psychological Insights
Williams Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies uses Sigmund Freud’s personality structural theory: Id, Ego and Superego. Each character in the book starts off with one personality, but then their mind is challenged when they crash into a deserted island. The boys have no parental authority and they realize it. At first they think life is going to be alright until most of them turn into a complete wild savage and they are no longer the well-behaved school boy they once were. Golding uses Freud’s personality theory to explain the personalities of the main characters. Ralph is the Ego, Jack is the Id, and Piggy is the Super-Ego. The Ego is supposed to be the balance between the Id and the Superego. They understand that others have desires and needs and that being selfish can hurt us in the end. The Ego is the character who is supposed to be the better one out of everyone. Ralph is the ultimate Ego personality in Lord of the Flies. His conscience is balanced by Jack (Id) and Piggy (Superego). At the beginning, he does not know that he is the main key to survival, but soon to find out he really is. Ralph becomes a leader and wants to do well because of the influence of Piggy. When Ralph finds a conch shell and decides to use it as the main speaking tool on the island he shows a strong sense of Ego. “We can use this to call the others. Have a meeting. They’ll come when they hear us.” He beamed at Ralph. “That was what you meant, didn’t you? That’s why you got the conch out of the water?” (Page 16) Whoever was holding the conch was allowed to speak and no one should interrupt. Ralph has a big heart and thinks before he acts. He shoes his kindness by protecting Piggy and only wanting what is best for all the other boys. Freud’s Superego personality represents the conscience. It is developed through moral and ethical restraints placed on us by our caregivers. Piggy is definitely the Superego in Lord of the Flies. Psychological Insights

Piggy is the Superego because he is the only boy who can see danger ahead of them. He tries to show kindness to all the other boys, but in return all he is picked on. Piggy sticks by Ralph’s side through the entire book. "Piggy was... so full of pride in his contribution to the good of society that he helped to fetch wood." Piggy only wanted what was best for the boys and for them to work together. He was considered the more scientific person of the group. His glasses played an important role in the book because they started the signal fire for the boys to be rescued. Even though Piggy was whinny and complained a lot he always stuck by Ralph’s side and never gave up on the thought that they could be rescued. The biggest personality that plays apart in Lord of the Flies is the Id. The Id overcomes most of the boys and makes them change. An Id personality contains our primitive impulses. Jack shows the change to the Id personality the most in the story. He starts off as a well-behaved young boy and then ended up turning into a wild savage. Jack becomes obsessed with hunting and killing animals. "'Kill the pig! Cut his throat! Kill the pig! Bash him in!' (Chapter 7) His whole mindset is about being hunter and nothing else matters....
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