conflict between the character Jack and Ralph in Goldings " Lord of the Flies"

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Topics: Choir, Instinct, Power
Throughout William Goldings novel Lord of The Flies there is an ever present

conflict between two characters. Ralph's character combines common sense with a strong

desire for civilized life. Jack, however, is an antagonist with savage instincts which he

cannot control. Ralph's goals to achieve a team unit with organization are destroyed by

Jack's actions and words that are openly displayed to the boys. The two leaders try to

convince the boys that their way of survival is correct. They continue this desire for

control while turning down each other's decisions and ideas. The back and forth conflicts

of opinion are what makes life chaos on the island. The boys are drawn away from a

civilized way of living.

Comments made by Ralph and Jack show the boys that Jack is resorting to

savagery. Ralph and Jack both agree in the beginning while they are reasoning in a civil

manner. Throughout the novel the two leaders stray from one another because of

differences in motivation. Jack told the boys "We've got to decide about being rescued"

(Golding, 20). This statement illustrates Jack's civilized concern for the whole group.

Jack seems to put the group before himself. This unselfish concern soon dissolves as the

internal beast prevails over the civil Jack. "I ought to be chief because I'm chapter

chorister and I can sing C sharp," (Golding, 21) displays Jacks own arrogance. After the

boys accept Ralph as chief, Ralph gives power over the choir boys to Jack. "The choir

belongs to you, of course," (Golding, 21) Ralph's unselfish act of giving Jack rule over

the choir boys is a way of keeping peace between the two groups and between Jack.

Ralph and Jack go exploring and return with the conclusion that the island can

support all of the boys. Ralph insists on building a signal fire. Ralph gains the support of

the boys. The boys immediately run to the top of the mountain to gather firewood. Jack

later belittles the fire and feels that hunting for meat is more

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