Symbolism Behind the Lord of the Flies

Topics: William Golding, Symbolism, Symbol Pages: 2 (754 words) Published: March 9, 2013
Kristyn Grety
Honors English 12
Symbolism behind the Lord of the Flies
William Golding is very known to use so much symbolism in Lord of the Flies that many critics agree that it is an allegory. Golding’s Lord of the Flies is “a named applied to the biblical demon Beelzebub” thus symbolizing evil (Rosenfield, p.174). Golding also uses symbolism of the four main characters Jack, Ralph, Piggy, and Simon in the story that “shows the characters work out their archetypal pattern of human society or of different conflicting tendencies within the individual” (Rosenfield p.176). Golding uses symbolism to show his reasoning’s of nature of mankind. “He believes that the change from good to evil, from civilization to primitivism is unavoidable if there is not any direct authority over people” (Symbolism in Lord of the Flies). Jack represents Totalitarianism showing tyranny and power. When all the boys gather to have a meeting and are discussing the idea of a chief, Jack states with arrogance “I ought to be chief,…because I’m chapter chorister and head boy” (Golding, 20). Jack has his hunters hunt, do wild dances, he drives them to savagery, organizes a plan to go against the leader, raid the camp where the leader is at, and become the dictatorial leader. He symbolizes the loss of innocence as soon as he paints his face to bring out his bestial nature of the human beings. His symbol is his knives. The switchblade he starts out with shows his power and as he progresses down to the stick which is sharpened at both ends you can see how this takes over his ego.

Ralph represents democracy and power, because he tries to maintain parliamentary procedures, freedom of speech, and he wanted everyone to be equal to each other. When he became a democratic leader who tries to keep the boys together on the island and keep order by using the conch shell to show his authority(Spitz,173). The conch which lets everyone have a chance to speak. The conch governs...
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