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Presence of Death in Literature

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Presence of Death in Literature

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  • October 21, 2013
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Presence of Death in Literature
Literature often contains themes that allow the reader to relate to the characters. From suicide to murders, death is an inevitable theme seen time and time over not only in real life but also in many types of literary works. It is used by many authors as a main driving force behind the plot as well as a method to add emotions in various works. The presence of death is a reoccurring subject in almost every type of literary work such as novels, short stories as well as plays. Firstly, death is seen in many different novels and is present in almost every genre. Death is even present in many novels aiming for younger readers such as William Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” and others. In the novel “Lord of The Flies”, death is a very common subject throughout the story as seen with the deaths of the little’un, Simon and Piggy. For starters, already in the first few chapters, death makes its first appearance as one of the little’uns disappears. “That little’un-’ gasped Piggy – ‘him with the mark on his face, I don’t see him. Where is he now?” (William Golding, p. 46) The little’un was earlier spotted playing in the forest near the mountain top where an accidental forest fire broke out just few moments after. The little’un with the mark on his face is now nowhere to be found and is presumed dead burnt in the fire. Moreover, death is seen a second time later on in the novel when Simon is attacked by all the boys. After his encounter with The Lord of the Flies, Simon manages to make his way back to Jack’s feast only to find a group of boys caught up in frenzy. In their bewildered state of mind, the savage boys descended upon the innocent child thinking he was the best and violently killed him. “At once the crowd surged after it poured down the rock, leapt on the beast, screamed, struck, bit, tore” ( William Golding, p.169). Finally, towards the end of the book, death is seen for the third and last time when Piggy and Ralph visit the...