Accelerated English II
November 12, 2010
At the beginning of Lord of the Flies, many, if not all of the characters seem like “ordinary” young British boys. They all attend boarding school, suggesting a state of some wealth. Their ages vary widely, and there are only a few candidates who are old enough (not necessarily mature enough) to possibly assert a semblance of order and stability on the island. They are the only characters that are deeply developed further along in the story, the only ones whose minds Golding takes you deep into.
Ralph is one of the greatest players in the story, and is the main protagonist in Lord of the Flies. Early on, he is very strong ...view middle of the document...
’” He is then made aware of the brutal truth that no one knows where they are, and that they are indeed stranded on an island, utterly alone. Ralph is bewildered by the preoccupation with violence that possesses the other boys, especially Jack, Roger, and Simon, and he does not wish to be sucked into their way of thinking. He does eventually succumb, however temporarily, and this has disastrous consequences.
Jack Merridew is the main opponent of Ralph in Lord of the Flies, and is the most in love with the idea of becoming hunters and killing for their food. This leads to major conflicts with Ralph, who believes keeping a signal fire alive and gathering fruit for food is much smarter and safer. When Jack is set to watch the fire, a ship happens to pass by the island, but to Ralph’s great dismay, the signal fire they had build had been allowed to go out, because Jack had decided to go off and hunt a pig, which he did eventually catch, but to Ralph, the ends did not in this case justify the means.
Jack is the leader of a boys’ choir from the boarding school they attended, which gives him a compulsive need to be in charge of the group of boys. He constantly tries to undermine
Ralph’s authority, with mixed results. He seems to have some problems, and is violent throughout, revealing a knife he carried on him from the start of the story. This may explain why he is so obsessed with killing something. Jack does eventually succeed in destroying the boys’ loyalty to Ralph and taking all but a few with him to his fortress on the mountain.
Simon is a boy whose life is much more shrouded in mystery than either Jack or Ralph, and seems to have a darker mind even than Jack. He reveals his idea that the “beast” that seems to haunt the island may not be an actually physical being, but a manifestation of the boys’ fears and the inner demon lurking inside each of their minds, whether they know it is there or not. He, at one point, sits in a glade in the jungle for what seems like hours, but may actually only have been a short moment, contemplating the sow’s head on a stick, which...