Lord of the Flies: Chapter 4-7 Notes

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1. When the fire goes out it symbolizes the loss of all remaining civility and the beginning of absolute savagery. The fire was the boys' only link to the past, as it was the one true technology they had. Fire symbolizes man's domination and manipulation of nature. As the fire goes out the boys are no longer people, but animals. It is also important to note that the fire was voluntarily allowed to die. This tells us that the boys voluntarily became savages, so this represents not only the loss of a civilized society, but also the betrayal of it. When the fire goes out, it also signifies the loss of hope. If the boys believed that they would be rescued, then they would not allow the fire to go out. Again, because of the fire being let out voluntarily it also represents the betrayal of hope. When the fire goes out, the boys no longer want to be a part of civilization or be rescued by it.2. The beast from the air is a dead man, who is attached to a parachute, falling from the sky. The beast from water is a figment of their imagination. Once again the loss of civilization and the old ways are represented. The dead man in the parachute, falling slowly, from the old world and civilization, represents the steady decline of the old ways which have been implemented in the new society and therefore the distinction of being civilized itself and the death of it. The beast represents mankind's fear of an outside threat as well as the evil and wrong doing that mankind brings upon itself. Fear of an outside threat has been a characteristic that mankind has had ever since we walked on two legs. Ancient peoples saw demons, and now many people claim to see UFO's and aliens; it is quite plausible that a very primitive society would see a beast. As evil and fear are created from man, so is the beast. The beast, being a fictitious creation of man and one that appears in every society, becomes no longer a physical entity, but a fear rooted deep in the human psyche; perhaps a...
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