Civilization Versus Savagery In Golding's Lord Of The Flies
"Man has demonstrated that he is master of everything - except his own nature." This quote from Henry Miller demonstrates that even the best of people can be tempted and twisted by their own nature. Like the symbolic pigs head stuck in the calm forests clearing, all beauty and innocence can be mutated when order is overthrown by impulse actions. In William Goldings novel, Lord of the Flies, a central theme exists demonstrating the deterioration of civilization, and the overpowering of savagery, leading to the abandonment of moral thoughts and actions within a person. The beauty of the island is burned away slowly as the fiery demon of savagery attempts to overwhelm the boys. The beauty of the island symbolizes the charm of law and morals that preserve order, while the pigs head represents the immoral and evil, and the product of actions not considered. Golding tries to convey that both savagery and civilization exists in a person, and when savagery emerges, it conquers the civilization and brings out a persons inner impulses and animalistic qualities, rather than logic and morals.
Civilization guides order and keeps people in check with their actions, while conscience is the sense of law existing internally, making a person aware without reinforcement of wrongdoing. The idea of civilization solely exists in the novel through Ralph and Piggy, who take in the most consideration for their actions. Both civilization and conscience are equally important in keeping and maintaining order, which is why the pair of Ralph and Piggy work well together, as they stay mostly uncorrupted by the evil trait, savagery. The wholeness of Ralphs ideas, in keeping the island like a functioning town, proves that his civil thoughts keep tensions from brewing and keep danger and death away. In the beginning of the novel, the environment is civil, as they plan out food and water schedules, and for working together to build shelter. Piggy acts as a conscience when rumors of ghost and monsters are spread, and he ends the gossip by explaining ghosts are not logical or scientific, meaning they do not exist. Piggy uses his smarts to make sundials for the boys to keep track of the time, and with Ralphs combination of leadership, the two boys begin to form what looks like the beginnings of a civilized camp. Civilization exists in the children, as they follow Ralphs initial commands and help build the first shelter. They don not fully understand why they act civil, but their morals passed on by parents or self growth guide them during the first portion of the book. Golding uses the combination of Ralph and Piggy to show the roots of civilization, and the peace that morals bring, and the other boys to show the balance factor of feeling obligated to act civil. They use law as a protective companion, making rules for only speaking when holding the conch, to prevent yelling and fights. Jack even shows a civil side to his mind, when first establishing their...
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The Conch in William Golding's Lord of the Flies2556 words - 10 pages The Conch in William Golding's Lord of the Flies In William Golding's novel “Lord of the Flies” he uses a lot of symbolism. The entire book is microcosm to the real world, as the novel is set at the time when World War II was going on and on the island there is a hunt at the end of the book symbolic of the war. A symbol Golding uses throughout the book is the conch. It represents authority and order. The person...
Jack the Egomaniac in William Golding's Lord of the Flies1281 words - 5 pages Having an individual take control over a group is inevitable. Adolf Hitler took over Germany; at first he was appointed as chancellor but the Germans’ let him get away with taking over as dictator (Truemen , 2013). It was out of fear that the Germans’ let him be in power. In Lord of the Flies, William Golding utilizes Jack as the most important character in the novel because of how his psychological personality affects the plot. Jack, much like...
Sigmund Freud's Theory in Golding's Lord of the Flies767 words - 3 pages Woven into the work of Golding, could be found the theory of personality composed by Sigmund Freud. The structure of this theory, built by the id, the ego and the superego, all connect to the personalities of the main characters in Lord of the Flies. Approached Starting from birth, the id is one of the main components of this theory. Described in three separate parts, Freud’s theory states the component of the id being the part of personality...
William Golding's Lord of the Flies1871 words - 7 pages William Golding's Lord of the Flies "Everything is breaking up. I don't know why." - Ralph What is going wrong on the island and why? The group of evacuees, all boys roughly aged between five and twelve, is dividing into two sets of people, each following either the ideal of civilisation, or the ideal of savagery. At the beginning of the novel, every boy, conditioned by society, was following the ideal of ...
William Golding's "Lord of the Flies".895 words - 4 pages The Ironic BattlesThroughout William Golding's Lord of the Flies, irony is reflected among many topicsand between various characters. William Golding forces one to...
William Golding's Lord of the Flies1911 words - 8 pages William Golding's Lord of the Flies "After all were not savages, we're English and the English are best at everything." - Trace the decline of civilisation during the novel. In this novel we can see the disintegration of reason and civilisation, which is inversely proportional to the rise of hedonistic ideas and savagery. We can also see that the island is a microcosm of the rest of the world, which is also...
William Golding's Lord of the Flies2526 words - 10 pages William Golding's Lord of the Flies "In 'Lord of the flies' Golding is clearly seeking to explore fundamental human nature and this is apparent from the way in which he portrays the slackening hold of civilisation on the boys can the consequent atavistic regression. By reversing mankind's evolution, he strips the boys to their essential nature." ...
William Golding's Lord of the Flies1766 words - 7 pages William Golding's Lord of the Flies The first chapter of the novel, The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding is effective in establishing the characters, concerns and language for the remainder of the book, as well as introducing the main themes of the novel; that the problems in society are related to the sinful nature of man and good verses evil. In Golding’s first chapter, the main characters are introduced, we see many ominous signs of...
William Golding's Lord Of The Flies1629 words - 7 pages The author, William Golding uses the main characters of Ralph, Jack, and Simon in The Lord of the Flies to portray how their desire for leadership, combined with lack of compromise leads to the fall of their society. This desire for leadership and compromise led to the fall of their society just like multiple countries during times of wars. ...
Deterioration of Civilization in Lord of the Flies968 words - 4 pages Deterioration of civilization has been speculated by the human race for centuries. As a result of these prophecies of chaos, William Golding wrote the novel Lord of the Flies in 1954. The story concerns a group of schoolboys that have been beached on an island from the crash of a plane. Without any adult guidance, the children must last and construct a civilization of their own until rescue arrives. Unfortunately, the schoolboys are quickly...
Lord of the Flies - From Merridew to Savagery1113 words - 4 pages From Merridew to SavageryThe angels of God are perfect; they don't do anything significantly harmful. "If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary" (Jackson Madison). If we were all angels, there would be no crime and no need for government. Our consciences' would not allow us to harm or break laws. Angels made by God were not...
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The title for the 3rd Annual Penguin Classics Essay Contest will be The Crucible by Arthur Miller. Essay topics will be posted on our website after July 2018.