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Essay/Term paper: Lord of the flies

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Cliff Notes

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In the novel, Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, Simon is

the most powerful character. Although he is peaceful and

shy, Simon closely resembles the role of Christ in many of

his ways. He tries to show the boys there is no monster on

the island except the fears that the boys have created in their

minds. During a meeting, Simon shares what he believes is

the truth by saying the beast, "Is only us." When he makes

this announcement, he is ridiculed by the boys, "The laughter

beat him cruelly and he shrank away defenseless to his seat."

This is an uncanny parallel to the misunderstanding that

Christ had to deal with. Later in the story the savage hunters

are chasing a pig. Once they kill the pig, they put its head on

a stick and Simon experiences an epiphany in which he

comes to understand the truth of his theory. As Simon

rushes to the campfire, "Stumbling through the thick sand,"

to tell his discovery to the boys, he is hit in the side with a

spear, his prophecy rejected and the word he wished to

spread ignored. Simon falls to the ground and dies. The

description of his death, the manner in which he died, and

the cause for which he died are remarkably similar to the

circumstances of Christ"s life and ultimate demise. The major

difference is that Christ died on the cross, while Simon was

speared. However, a reader familiar with the Bible may

recall that Christ was stabbed in the side with a spear before

his crucifixion.

A Link to the Outside World

In the novel, Lord of the Flies written by William Golding, a

large spiral shaped sea shell, known as a conch shell,

became crucial for society developed by the surviving boys.

Similarly, in Greek mythology Triton, the son of Neptune,

uses the conch shell to stir or calm the seas. Here, Ralph,

following the instructions of Piggy, uses the shell to subdue

and control the animal spirits of the boys. Living on a small,

unnamed island, with no adult figures, the conch shell

became their symbol of authority. The influence of the conch

kept the children"s hopes of being rescued going, for it

reminded them of the order there was in the world where

they had come from. It seemed to be the only link to the

world of order and civilization. Events that went along with

the finding of the conch shell started with Ralph being named

the chief of the island because he was the first boy to blow

into it, "Making a mooeing noise," he called the first meeting.

Next came the rule, "Whoever held the conch could speak."

This gave some organization and structure to the meetings.

Soon the small society started to separate and chaos was

becoming the consequence. As a result of confusion and

violence in the society, "The conch exploded into a thousand

white fragments," accompanied by Piggy"s death. With the

conch shell destroyed it seemed to mean the end of all their

ties to the outside world and the beginning of the reign of

savages. As Jack said, "There isn"t a tribe for you anymore!

The conch is gone."


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