Lord of the Flies is a novel created by the author William Golding. It points out how man can fall out of civility and dive in to savagery given overpowering and confusing instances in life. In the novel, the author used children evacuated in a war whose plane was shot down and soon trapped in a deserted island. The children were faced with many problems in the island they are trapped in. First was shelter, second was their food, third their fears of a beast and lastly their escape from the island.
The novel had so many characters. One of them was Ralph, who was appointed as the leader of the group of children. Ralph was responsible in tending to what the children need for them to live long in the island. He addresses the problems in the island by giving tasks to everyone. In addressing the problem with regards to their escape in the island, Ralph decided to make a signal fire in the central mountain in which all of the children participated upon. They have managed to get a large fire but it soon went down. Another character is Jack, he was appointed by Ralph as the leader of the hunter group. The duties of the hunters were to catch pig to provide meat for the group and to maintain the large signal fire in the central mountain for them to be rescued by airplanes and ships passing near the island.
As soon as the flame went down, Jack and his group volunteered to maintain the signal fire on at all times. In their excitement of turning the flame on again, they set ablaze swath of trees, and in their careless disorganization lead them to the loss of one of their members which then puts Ralph in shame. However, with the loss of a member they still managed to pretend that nothing happened and go on with their normal lives in the island. It was a death everyone lied upon and gave no importance to. Instead of getting lessons from it, a lesson for them to act collectively and act as responsible citizens, they chose to discard the event and pretend that nothing happened.
As the story progresses, Ralph and Jack were competing for power which then leads to Jack deserting the group and convincing people in the group to join him in his new group. He then became a power hungry tyrant in his new place named Castle Rock.
A dogfight between 2 warplanes happened over the island which then leads to the landing of a parachuted pilot’s corpse in the island which the character Simon, a choir member, believed was the beast that they have feared existed in the island. Knowing about this Simon rushed to the feast held by Jack.
It was raining badly that day and when Simon nears the place where the feast is held, he was mistakenly identified as the beast and was killed by his fellow children in the feast. It was a death everyone except Ralph thought was an accident. A death caused by lack of communication between the children where they act as instinctual beings like animals in a forest. If only they have thought about it as human beings and given Simon the chance to speak up, he would not have been killed.
Believing that the beast is still alive, Jack sends two of his hunter to raid Ralph’s group to get more fire to hunt the beast. By doing so, they stole Piggy’s eyeglasses. Piggy was Ralph’s second in command in the group. Ralph then decided to go to Castle Rock to get Piggy’s eyeglasses for without it they could not maintain the large signal fire on. As soon as Ralph reached the place, he demanded Jack to give back Piggy’s eyeglasses. But instead of giving back the eyeglass, Jack fought Ralph. Piggy on the other hand wanting to be heard shrilled but was accidentally killed as he was hit by a large boulder scooped out by a child from Jack’s group whose aim was to hit Ralph instead of Piggy. With the death of Piggy, the children turned to complete savages as they lust for violence instead of teaming up to get out of the island alive. If only they listened to Piggy, they would have found a way to be rescued together.
Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. United Kingdom: Faber and Faber,1954.