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Lord of the Flies: Literally, the Lord of the Flies means the pig's head that was covered with flies. However, metaphorically, it relates to how the devil deceives the people greatly and influences them to create violence and pandemonium. The flies represent the children because they are easy to manipulate, and the lord is the devil, or simply Satan. The children, particularly the ones that Jack had influenced, became occupied with evil and ire which led to their loss of civilization. So basically, the authority, power, and manipulation of the devil can influence the weak (man including children) so greatly, that it can lead us to go against ourselves and our own morals, and others as well.
The novel takes place on an unknown island during World War II, which was from 1939-1945. The purpose of the setting is to portray how a society, no matter the size, without laws and regulations can ultimately lead to a hellish consequence for man, both mentally and physically.
Ralphis a twelve-year-old boy with the qualities of a leader, which is shown earlier on in the novel. Physically, he is well-built which he utilizes in creating small huts and other things that can help them make their presence at the island more comfortable until they are rescued. Basically, he is the only one who actually comprehends the quandary and tries to interpret the possibilities of the solutions. Later on, the other characters lose their civilized qualities and become savage hunters in which Ralph becomes disgusted by. Through his eyes, the reader is able to see how a society without rules can turn man into an animal so primeval and evil.
Jackis a very aggressive, persuasive, and clever character in the novel. He possesses the qualities of an absolute leader, or dictator. From the time the reader meets Jack until the end, he is always thinking of his hunger for power. His obsession for hunting began when he was unsuccessful at capturing a wild hog. However, this fueled him greatly, and he was motivated to get the other boys involved in spreading his devotion to hunting and savaging. Jack's character parallels the qualities of Adolf Hitler of WWII. Hitler captivated the others in his horrendous plan of exterminating the Jews, similarly how Jack influences and persuades the other to become hunters and savages and to promote violence on the island.
Man versus Himself
Major Event 1: Everyone of the boys call for an assembly to elect a leader or chief of the group. Ralph wins the election against Jack, which infuriates him and leads to the start of his savage acts against the others.
Major Event 2: Ralph is constantly thinking of ways that could make their stay at the island more comfortable until they are rescued. He believes that everyone should work together in creating huts for shelter and to create a large signal fire similar to an S.O.S.
Major Event 3:The children then separate into two groups: one led by Ralph and one led by Jack upon hearing of a beast inhabiting the island. Jack's group, however, develop the need to kill others to save themselves from the atrocities of the island. They embrace the motto "kill, or be killed," so to speak.
The theme of Lord of the Fliesis that every person is capable of causing great harm and great evil, but do not realize it until the "beast" is unleashed.
Story Map Book Project
Review of Lord of the Flies
I enjoyed this book very much because I love history, particularly the epoch of the twentieth century. This time period experienced both of the great wars which is very interesting to me. The Second World War is even more fascinating because of the fact of how Hitler rose to the top and carried out his vicious plans when he had already told the world that he was going to do it. This war is a parallel structure towards the story because the characters are symbolic of the people and their actions. The actions and qualities of Jack represented Hitler because of his radical ideals and morals in exterminating the weak and undeserving. The people under Jack definitely represent the Nazi party or even the European population that went along with Hitler's plans. His words were so persuasive and controlling that some believed that it was the right thing to eliminate the Jewish population. Similarly, Jack was a persuasive character who took the other boys under his wing causing them to embrace the evil inside of them and killing all of those who did not possess the skills to survive.
The book successfully creates a connection with the history behind it and it explains how easily it was for the population of Europe to believe in Hitler's plans. Those who opposed this movement were the ones who actually saw the evil in them such as the characters Simon and Ralph. Simon was the first to recognize the treacherous acts conducted by them, but due to his lack of physical strength and because of the number gains, he was killed. This symbolized the people in Europe who knew that the acts of the Nazis were wrong but they refused to carry out any actions to oppose it because they would have been killed along with the Jews. I thought that the way Golding was able to connect the story to the historical acts of World War II was just astounding and remarkable. Also, the fact that the characters were children was even more remarkable because it showed that it doesn't matter who you are, you have the evil inside of you that is capable of horrendous acts. I was simply enthralled by this book from beginning to end.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of history or to anyone that wants to enjoy the psychological behaviors of man. The strict isolation of the island imposes a society without laws and regulations on the boys and even though they are just mere boys, they reflect the actions and qualities of very unstable individuals. The novel, however, is a very good book for the everyday person as well because of its large use of literary techniques such as imagery that put pictures in the minds of the readers and the twist at the end of the book that leads everyone to lose their mind and go on a rampage of killing everyone they see. The way that the author illustrates the adventure, action, and mystery in the novel and how it captivates the reader is a thrill ride from cover to cover that will not let you keep the book down.