2 December 2012
Following his career in the Royal Navy, William Golding began to compose his most famous novel, Lord of the Flies. Shortly after their plane crashes on a solitary island, a group of English school boys attempt to maintain order and civilization. Ralph, the chief of the group, struggles to gain power and leadership from his followers, especially, the defiant, violent boy named Jack. Throughout the years, critic’s have argued that the novel is a religious allegory that has numerous biblical allusions within the work. Lord of the Flies is, in fact, a religious allegory in which the island represents the Garden of Eden, the beast symbolizes the fall of man, and Simon acts as the Christ figure.
First, the novel displays religious allegory characteristics through the islands similarities to the Garden of Eden. Golding describes that “The shore was fledged with palm trees. These stood or leaned or reclined against the light and their green feathers were a hundred feet up in the air” (Golding 9). The captivating imagery of the island corresponds to the flawless description of the Garden of Eden. According to Genesis 2:9 “The LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground-trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food.” The abundance of fruits and plants around the island provides visual similarities to the beautiful Garden of Eden. Although there are numerous graphic characteristics to the Bible, the innocence between Adam and Eve and the stranded boys also exist throughout the novel. After first arriving on the island, most of the boys were stripped of their clothing, but they do not experience any ashamed feelings at first. Golding expresses their innocence when he states “Some [boys] were naked and carrying their clothes; others half-naked, or more or less dressed…” (Golding 18). Their innocence is correspondingly similar to Adam and Eve during their time in the Garden of Eden. As the...
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