The Nature Of Man In Lord Of

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The Nature Of Man In Lord Of The Flies Essay, Research Paper William Golding, in his novel Lord of the Flies symbolically describes the degeneration of a civilized society. Embedded within the story of a group of young boys struggling to survive alone on a deserted island are insights to the capacity of evil within the human soul and how it relates to the defect in societies. After a plane crash that results in their inhabitation of the island, the boys establish a democratic society that thrives on order, necessity and unity. Slowly, however, the peaceful society that they create shatters through a path of hatred, disrespect, murder and the release of the true human soul. Many of William Golding’s works discusses man’s capacity for fear and cowardice. Golding wished to

show that fear is an emotion that is instinctive and active in humans from the very beginnings of their lives. This revelation uncovers another weakness in man, supporting Golding’s belief that beneath the coat of civility lies the hidden human passion, savagery and an almost animal-like cruelty. Throughout the novel, there is a constant struggle for power between two groups and the struggle illustrates man’s fear of losing control. The fear of the unknown is natural, the fear of losing power is inherited – Golding uses these vices to prove the point that any type of uncontrolled fear contributes to men’s stability and will ultimately lead to his demise spiritually and perhaps even physically. Lord of the flies used changes experienced by boys on an uninhabited island to

show the evil nature of man. By using different characters and various events the author was able to portray various types of people found in our society. Their true selves were revealed in the absence of adults, laws and punishment. The existence of civilisation allows man to remain innocent or ignorant of his true nature. When the concepts of humanity and civilisation slip away or are ignored, human beings revert to the more primitive, savage-like part of their nature – the fall of the boys on the island clearly indicate this. The early chapters of the book illustrated a macrocosm of man, where the presence of democracy and order suppressed the emergence to the conscious level of man’s carnivorous nature and the catastrophe that would inevitably accompany this emergence.

Within the confines of civility, Jack was unable to bring himself to kill a pig because of “the enormity of the knife descending and cutting into living flesh; because of the unbearable blood”. The overwhelming sense of morality has not yet lost its hold on the boys in this part of the novel – “Only Percival began to whimper with an eyeful of sand and Maurice hurried away. In his other life Maurice had received chastisement for filling a younger eye with sand. Now, though there was no parent to let fall a heavy hand, Maurice still felt the unease of wrong-doing.” Roger threw stones at Henry, yet he threw them to miss, as “there was a space around Henry, perhaps six yard in diameter, into which he dare not throw. Here, invisible yet strong, was the taboo of the old

life. Round the squatting child was the protection of parents and school and policemen and the law”. The dark and savage facets of human nature begin to unravel with the increase in the boys’ fear of the beast and the realisation that there would be no one to enforce rules and administer punishment upon them. The savage and primitive ways that were previously concealed by civilisation are now surfacing, and all their conditioning is falling apart in face of their primal instincts, and these instincts are deadly. As the novel progresses, the boys’ reversion to savagery is all the more evident. Civilisation separates man from animals by teaching them to think and make choices – when the hold of civilisation weakens, the regression to men’s primitive nature inevitably