Evaluation of The Lord of the Flies


Lord of the Flies is a 202 page long adventure story written by William
Golding in 1954 about a number of boys marooned on a tropical island and left to
fend for themselves. While on the island, they discover quite a bit of evil
within themselves.
A few years after World War 2, a planeful of boys as young as 5 or 6
but most no older than 11 or 12 crashes near an uninhabited tropical island. As
soon as they land, one of the eldest assumes leadership of the others, but not
before befriending an overweight, asthmatic boy nicknamed Piggy. Ralph takes
control of the boys and organizes a small expedition up the mountain. He meets
Jack Merridew, the chief antagonist. Jack is then a leader of choir boys, but
will soon turn into a leader of savages. On the mountain, Jack hunts but does
not kill a pig. He vows to kill it the next time. On their return, Ralph holds
an informational meeting and informs the boys that they will be safe, but that
they must start a signal fire and set up temporary shelters until help can be
found. A rumour of a beast is heard, but is quickly discounted as a nightmare.
It will later be a major theme in the book. On the mountain, fire is created,
but only through the use of Piggy\'s glasses. After Jack goes off to hunt and
comes back, Ralph discusses the problems of people not working with Jack. Simon
goes into the jungle alone and contemplates. The boys become used to the daily
tasks on the island. The small children play all the time while the older ones
do most of the work. The first flash of Jack\'s future warrior/hunter position as
leader is shown as he comes back to camp with his face painted. A ship is
spotted, but they find that the signal fire on the mountain has gone out, and
the ship passes them by. Jack finally kills a pig, but Piggy criticizes him. In
return, Jack slaps Piggy and breaks one of the lenses on his glasses. Ralph
warns Jack to stop this destructive behaviour. Jack starts roasting the pig he
had killed earlier. Jack does not initially give Ralph any food, but he does
finally get some. Ralph calls an assembly after the feast. He verbally attacks
all the boys for their neglect for the daily tasks that must be completed such
as building shelters and keeping the fire lit. The fear of the beast grows even
larger. Piggy begins to criticize them as the meeting turns anarchic and
disorderly, and Jack begins to shift towards leadership. That night, there is an
aerial battle above the island. In the half-asleep state of the boys, they
believe that the beast has come to kill them. An expedition is organized, but
finds nothing. They come to a part of the island that nobody had been to before
and they reflect quietly. Later, Jack and his growing army of hunters go off to
hunt another pig. Jack is wounded in the battle with the pig. The hunter boys
start a new dance-like ritual in which one of the boys pretends to be the pig
and their battle cry of "kill the pig" is repeated. At first, nobody is hurt in
the ritual, but eventually it becomes more and more brutal. Ralph, Roger, and
Jack continue to hunt for the beast. They discover a strange creature in the
shadows; it is in fact the dead pilot from the airplane that had crashed the
night before, but they do not realize this. Terror rapidly grows as news of the
beast is spread. Jack calls a meeting and publicly accuses Ralph of cowardice
and explains how he is unfit for leadership. Jack leaves, and many of the
hunters follow him. Piggy somehow manages to remain calm and helps Ralph regroup
after Jack leaves. Jack hunts and kills a pig, and leaves its bloody skull on a
pole as sacrifice. This skull is the symbolic Lord of the Flies in the novel.
Jack holds another pig-feast. Ralph and Piggy at first do not attend but are
eventually drawn to it mostly by hunger, but also in a fleeting attempt to
regain some control over the boys. Almost all of the boys have join Jack\'s tribe
by this point. Simon has an extremely symbolic hallucinatory experience in the
jungle as he starts to believe that the head is speaking to him as