Significance Of The Conch In Lord Of The Flies Essay

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"A conch he called it. He used to blow it and his mum would come. It's ever so valuable" – Piggy, Lord of the Flies. The conch is a sea creature, its shell is revered in many cultures such as Hinduism and Buddhism for its beauty and the sound it makes. The conch is also that shell in Lord of the Flies which is blown into to gather the boys. The author, William Golding, uses the conch to show that democracy will succumb to rule by force in the face of serious trouble or need. In the book, it is a symbol of democratic power but it is not without its enemies who eventually overrule it. The conch is a symbol of democratic power at the beginning of the story. First, it is used to gather the boys. Ralph blows the conch to assemble them…show more content…
This is best shown when Ralph says "I'll blow the conch […] and call an assembly", Jack responds "We shan't hear it."(167) As a result, we can see that Jack is an enemy of democracy, as any authoritarian ruler would be. Moreover, Jack uses torture to make people do his bidding. We see this when he tortures Sam with a spear, "'What do you mean by not joining my tribe?' The prodding became rhythmic. Sam yelled."(202) We can therefore see that Jack uses pain and fear to rule, another characteristic of dictators such as Sadaam Hussein. Lastly, rocks of all shapes and sizes are used by Jack and his tribe for aggression, another tool of rule by force. One example of this is the use of a boulder to smash anyone who approaches Castle Rock, this is shown in chapter 10 "Robert leaned lightly of the lever and the rock groaned. A full effort would send the rock thundering down to the neck of land. Roger admired."(176) Thus, rocks are tools of Jack's dictatorship and symbols of rule by force. Since Jack opposes democracy, tortures to rule and uses tools such as rocks for aggression; he, his tribe and rocks are symbols of rule by force. The conch loses its power to Jack and all that symbolises rule by force. As mentioned before, Jack openly disregards the conch and the power it gives. Because of this event, we can see that the conch is starting to lose its power. In addition, Jack does not care for the conch even if he can have it. We see this when Jack
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