Clear Rules In Lord Of The Flies

1139 Words 5 Pages
LOTF Essay

Could modern day society function without clear rules, laws, and enforcement of those rules? In Lord Of The Flies, William Golding uses symbolism and characters to show that humans need rules and enforcement of those rules in order to function effectively. Without them, humans naturally become savages, which leads to an unsustainable and dangerous society. The diminishing power of the rules, and the results of this is shown through the fire, the power and respect towards the conch, and Jacks changing attitude.

At the start of the novel, when the boys had rules, their society was efficient and accomplished things. As they lose enforcement of their rules, society stops functioning; they stop building and adding wood to the fire.
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At the start of the novel, everyone follows the conch and respects it. However the conch begins to lose its power over time. At first, they all obey the conch without question and they respect the rules. “That 's what this shell’s called. I’ll give the conch to the next person to speak. He can hold it when he 's speaking….And he won’t be interrupted. Except by me.” (33). This quotation shows that the boys established clear rules, and these rules would be followed. The rules help to form a well organised society at the time. Later on in the novel, Jack and a few others become tired of the conch, and they start to disobey it. “I’m the chief said Ralph tremulously. And what about the fire? And I’ve got the conch…..You haven’t got it with you, said Jack, sneering. You left it behind. See, clever? And the conch doesn’t count on this side of the island.” (150). This quotation shows that Jack is completely defying the conch, showing that the rules and the power of the conch are not being enforced enough, and are therefore being disrespected more openly. Towards the end of the book, the boys lose all sense of reason and they completely ignore the conch, and even end up crushing it along with Piggy. “The rock struck Piggy, a glancing blow from the chin to the knee; the conch exploded into a thousand white fragments and ceased to exist. (p.181). This quotation shows that without any rules, the boys …show more content…
Jack clearly represents the boys’ developing a savage attitude as the rules lose their grip on them. At the start of the novel, Jack is actually fond of the rules, and even suggests a few. “Jack was on his feet. We’ll have rules! He cried excitedly. Lots of rules! Then when anyone breaks ‘em-” (33). At this point in the novel, Jack and everyone else agree with the rules. While they’re obeying the rules, society is doing well, and they are acting like proper human beings. However, as the novel progresses, the rules begin to lose their effect, and boys like Jack start to show more savagery and more violence. “Ralph made a step forward and Jack smacked Piggy’s head. Piggy’s glasses flew off and tinkled the rocks. Piggy cried out in terror:” (71). This is the first time that Jack had actually physically harmed one of the other boys, and thus it is a clear sign of the changing society and a large step towards total savagery. Finally at the end of the book, Jack has developed a completely primitive and savage mindset, to a point where he attempts to kill Ralph. “Viciously, with full intention, he hurled his spear at Ralph. The point tore the skin and flesh over Ralph’s ribs, then sheared off and fell in the water. Ralph stumbled now, feeling not pain but panic, and the tribe, screaming now like the chief, began to advance.” (181). This quotation shows that without rules and order to

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