Lord of the Flies: the Reality of Human Nature

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The definition of human nature is when people have certain natural characteristics that include thinking, feeling, and acting. Many believe humans are good at heart, and want to do beneficial things for the world. Some examples of these include John Locke and Jean Jacques Rousseau. But given the situation, others believe that humans are born evil. A man by the name of William Golding believes this. His book, Lord of the Flies, is about a group of boys who crashed onto an island that’s uninhabited by humans. Throughout the book, the boys have to figure out how to survive on their own. At first, the boys try to have order in their society by using the conch to call assemblies, but as the story progresses, the situation leads to the boys showing their true evil selves. Golding uses the shell as a motif to show how human nature is inherently evil, by symbolizing that the conch shell fades as civilization fades. At the beginning of the novel, the conch represents rules and structure because the boys have not yet been in an inner evil inducing situation. This is demonstrated when all the boys are holding an assembly to figure out how to get rescued: “Ralph waved the conch.

‘Shut up! Wait! Listen!’
He went on in the silence, borne on in his triumph.”(38)
The boys are still used to living in a world where there is civilization, so the children listen to the conch because for them, it is a token of authority. Their minds have not yet been poisoned with savage thoughts, and they are still bent out on finding a way to get rescued and to go back to civilization. Another quote that shows how the conch represents structure is when Piggy and Ralph have just found the conch and Piggy says, “We can use this to call the others. Have a meeting. They’ll come when they hear us.” (16) Even when the boys have just found the shell, it has a power over them. This is because they are still still in the mind set that they need society, because society is what they have known their...
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