Lord of the Flies

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Civilization vs. Savagery What do symbols illustrate in novels? In William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, symbols are illustrated through people, objects, and colors. In this novel, a group of children are faced with the difficulty of living isolated from society after their plane crashes on a deserted island. With no formal civilization, parents, or rules, the kids have the freedom to do as they choose. Throughout the novel, the boys find and use objects on the island that symbolize something of different importance. In Lord of the Flies, William Golding uses different objects to symbolize the difference between civilization and savagery. One of the first symbols presented in the Lord of the Flies is the conch shell. After the boys’…show more content…
These masks, which are used by Jacks followers called ‘the hunters,’ are made of clay paint. The evilness of the boys is clearly shown when they wear the masks. It is almost as if an infectious disease is spread upon them; they lose all sense of civilization. After Jack paints the mask on his face for the first time, it is clear what it does to him. “He began to dance and his laughter became a blood thirsty snarling. “He capered toward Bill, and the mask was a thing of its own, behind which Jack hid, liberated from shame and self-consciousness.” (Golding 64). This not only shows the cruelty of the mask, but it also shows how it opens Jack into the world of being a savage. Also, Golding mentions the colors of Jack’s first mask as being Red, White, and Black. These colors symbolize “violence, terror, and evil.” (Golding). The darkest and most violent symbol on the island is the rock. Roger, one of the savage boys, uses the rock to kill Piggy. Comparable to the mask, the rock is red representing violence. “High overhead, Roger with a sense of delirium abandonment, leaned all of his weight on the lever.” (Golding 180). This describes the scene when Roger, standing on a cliff, pushes the rock down on Piggy. The scene in the story when Roger kills Piggy represents more than just the death of one of the protagonists. Not only does the rock smash Piggy, but it also shatters the conch. The conch and Piggy
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