Essay on Allegory in Lord of the Flies

1473 Words Mar 5th, 2012 6 Pages
Allegory in Lord of the Flies
In William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, which is set during World War II, English school boys, escaping war in England, crash on a deserted tropical island. From the protected environment of boarding school, the boys are suddenly thrust into a situation where they must fend for themselves. In order to survive, the boys copy their country’s rule for a civilized life by electing a leader, Ralph. He promises order, discipline, and rules for the boys so that they form a small civilized society. This civilized society does not last. Struggling with Jack who wants to be the leader and the boys’ fears of the unknown, Ralph is unable to maintain control, and the boys fulfill Golding’s perspective that human
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Although the boys would prefer to have fun and play games, they follow Ralph’s rules at first. This order is maintained until Ralph loses his leadership role to Jack. After providing, or bribing, the boys with juicy pig meat, Jack asks “’Who’ll join my tribe and have fun?’” (211). This lure of enjoyment along with the promise of more food sways the boys to follow Jack. With the demise of Ralph’s leadership and under the leadership of Jack, the boys begin to turn towards savagery.
From this point on, the change in the leadership brings with it the transformation of the boys from ordered society to savages. Through the downfall of Ralph’s leadership and the resulting descent into savagery, Golding is able to reveal how the dark side of human nature can prevail. Golding’s character Piggy portrays the voice of reasoning and logic and his glasses symbolize his wisdom. Ralph recognizes Piggy’s ability to think with clarity and soon depends upon him in his role as leader. Piggy’s idea to use the conch to assemble all the survivors leads to Ralph’s election as leader. Ralph uses Piggy’s ideas for building shelter and Piggy’s glasses to ignite the signal fire. “Ralph moved the lenses back and forth, this way and that, till a glossy white image of the declining sun lay on a piece of the rotten wood” (30). Golding shows his pessimistic view of human nature as Piggy, whose ideas and logical thoughts have been so important to the
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