Jack Merridew Lord Of The Flies Character Analysis

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Leaders can originate from anywhere, whether admirable or wicked. But a harsh leader does not translate into an incompetent leader. In the novel, Lord of the Flies, by William Golding, Jack Merridew is one of these leaders. In the novel, a group of boys are stranded on an island after a crash-landing. Instead of an experience similar to Coral Island, the boys find the terrain to be savage and unforgiving, morphing the boys into fragments of their original self. Ralph is immediately elected leader of the tribe, leaving Jack, the other candidate, powerless. However, he constantly defies Ralph’s (the leader) guidelines and annihilates the one piece of civilization they boys have left, the conch. Even though Jack is an adroit leader, he is an arrogant …show more content…
This is first shown in Jack’s pig hunt, where he “[finds] the throat [of the sow] and the hot blood spouted over his hands” (135). He then savagely smears the blood onto himself and the other boys’ bodies in a gleeful merriment, as if taking pleasure in the kill. This proves that Jack is malign because he deliberately slaughtered a sow, a mother of piglets fated to die in the forest, in a ghastly and gruesome manner. It was established in the beginning of the novel, that the only way to sever a pig and keep the meat usable is to slit its throat. Not only did Jack do this, but he also tortured the animal along the way, maliciously mauling its skin with innumerable spears and eventually mangling its flesh beyond its repair. This was not an act of hunting, but an act of aggression towards an innocent mother, proving Jack’s callous behavior. Later, in his new tribe, Jack becomes megalomaniac, with “power [on] the brown shell of his forearms” and “authority [sitting] on his shoulder” (150). Building off the fact that he is pompous and vain, Jack is using this authority to control the boys, to make them mechanical factions of his “way”. Jack is going crazy with his newfound power and governance, and his vain temperament entails only chaos to come of it. In Chapter 11: Castle Rock, Piggy is killed in the crossfire between Jack and Ralph. Instead of sympathy, Jack replies coldly, “That’s what you’ll get! I meant …show more content…
He makes sure that all the boys have enough nourishment and entices them into his tribe because of it. However, this statement proves that Jack was only a competent leader; though his priorities were astray. In Chapter 3: Huts on the Beach, his imports are tested when he and Ralph erupt in a heated debate between their viewpoints. “But I shall! Next time! …We wounded a pig and the spear fell out. If we could only make barbs-“(51), Jack argued for his hunters. This proves Jack monomaniacal; he is only thinking about hunting, instead of the greater good like a noble leader would. Jack was too contumacious to even acknowledge Ralph’s opposition, instead blocking it out and continuing with his own agenda. Even if Jack can be proven to be a passable leader, he is still an arrogant tyrant because of his cunning personality. In his tribe, Jack “hemmed in the [boys] terror and made it governable” (152). This process of fear-mongering might have accumulated more adherents into his following, but it proves that he is not a good leader. The inhabitants did not voluntarily join with Jack but are only there for the sake of their own lives. This is not the path of a gallant leader, but the corrupt way of an evil man. Therefore, Jack’s dogmatic and sly actions prove that he is an arrogant

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