Symbolism In Lord Of The Flies By William Golding

Improved Essays
Symbolism in Lord of the Flies
The book Lord of the Flies by William Golding is very symbolic and by including key symbols in the story Golding reveals the deeper meanings of them in the book Lord of the Flies. The most important symbols in the Lord of the Flies that symbolize what is happening to the boys and the island are the conch, the glasses and fire. A first reason for how the symbols make the story better is the way the conch is used in Lord of the Flies. Right from the beginning the conch is given power when it is used to call the boys together and Ralph becomes the leader. From that point onwards it represents power, rules and authority. An example of this is when they are deciding who should be chief and Ralph is set apart because
…show more content…
19) This quote shows that the boys wanted Ralph to be chief because he was in control of it when the voting happened which put him above the others because he had the conch. In the middle of the book the conch begins to lose its importance and reliability of summoning everyone because Jack is starting to ignore the rules and challenge Ralph and the conch. An example of this is when the boys run away from the assembly to follow Jack to the beach and Ralph won’t call them back “If I blow the conch and they don’t come back; then we’ve had it.” (pg. 99) This shows that Jack and soon some of the other boys don’t respect the conch and what it stands for anymore and the conch is beginning to lose some its value. Near the end of …show more content…
At the beginning of the book the boy’s first goal for fire is to try and alert a passing ship but they get to carried away and a piece of the island gets burned down. It starts out as a symbol for hope and rescue but we also see the destructive side of fire. The hope that fire brings can be shown when Ralph says “If a ship comes near the island they may not notice us. So we must make smoke on top of the mountain. We must make a fire.” (pg. 37). This quote shows that the boys believe that they can be rescued if they build a fire on the mountain. Later in the book some of the boys start to forget about the fire and rescue as they get more and more savage. An example of this is when Ralph mentions rescue to Jack and “Jack had to think for a moment before he remembered what rescue was.” (pg. 54). This shows that people are beginning to lose sight of being rescued and are turning to more primitive behaviors like hunting instead of maintaining the fire. At the end of the book the boys have completely forgotten about the signal fire and the hope of rescue and fire is only used for destruction. This can be shown when Jack lights the island on fire in an effort to smoke out Ralph and kill him but Ralph is saved when he runs into a naval officer on the beach “We saw your smoke. What have you been doing? Having a war or something?” (pg. 223). This shows that

Related Documents

  • Great Essays

    Ralph makes a recrimination, “You let the fire go out...there was a ship” (70). The hunter 's control the fire, and letting the fire die indicates them losing that control. Jack doesn’t apologize for letting the fire leave the hunters’ command, but instead retorts, “The job was too much. We needed everyone” (71). The loss of control prevents the boys from the possibility of rescue before more death and destruction could take over the island.…

    • 1850 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The Dalai Lama, a wise religious figure, reminds us to “do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.” Loss of innocence happening over time is natural, however the rapid need for change forced on the boys leads to mass chaos. In William Golding's book, Lord of the Flies, the bewildered young boys lose their innocence through their interactions with each other on the island. There are many passages from the book Lord of the Flies that demonstrate the children losing their innocence. When the boys are setting the island on fire, and the boy with the birthmark is dying due to their actions they are losing all purity they once had. While Simon is picking the fruit for the little un's the power struggle between Jack and Ralph is becoming heated; these two congruent occurrences…

    • 621 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The obvious surface function was to send smoke in the sky hoping for help, but the other function was to give those with little hope comfort that it was going to be alright for the time being. Jack's Tribe has sucked much of the hope out of the island leaving the remaining people with Ralph feeling uneasy with themselves in which case this makes Ralph's first thought go to the fire which will for a temporary period of time at least take his mind off of all the evil around…

    • 862 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    If the boys' world is just a symbol for the real world, then they're not being rescued at all; They’re just going on to a larger scale of violence—to grow up into soldiers getting sent off to war. Hence, rescue equals destruction even though there is more order. The signal fire burns on the mountain, and later on the beach, to attract the notice of passing ships that might be able to rescue the boys as stated before. As a result, the signal fire becomes a barometer of the boys’ connection to civilization. In the early parts of the novel, the fact that the boys maintain the fire is a sign that they want to be rescued and return to society.…

    • 460 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In this part of the book Ralph was just voted to be leader of the boys and he is now realizing that him saying he is chief isn't enough because the boys are going wild. He now realizes that he has to start making laws and order. When Ralph is chosen to be the leader the other boys were more concerned with having fun, playing, and avoiding work. Ralph on the other hand was more worried about building huts and thinking of ways to be rescued. Ralph says “ we’ve got to make smoke up there or die” that is his first thought of being rescued so the boys build a fire on the top of the island.…

    • 920 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    At the beginning of they story the symbol of fire creates the mood of hope. At this point the boys are just getting order but most are still afraid. Ralph is trying to lead them by suggesting a way to get rescued, by starting a fire. Ralph says, “We can help them to find us. If a ship comes near the island they may not…

    • 670 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Lord Of The Flies Symbolism Analysis

    • 1237 Words
    • 5 Pages
    • 1 Works Cited

    “‘If a ship comes near the island they may not notice us…We must make a fire.’…At once half the boys were on their feet.” (Golding 37). When the first fire is lit, the boys are all caught up in the excitement of starting a fire and potentially being rescued, and the fire soon grows out of their control. The fire is frequently brought up by Ralph, whose main objective is to be rescued from the island. Later on, even Ralph begins to let the fire slip from his mind. “He tried to remember…he turned on the twins fiercely.…

    • 1237 Words
    • 5 Pages
    • 1 Works Cited
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    At the start of the novel, Ralph is focused on the fire, as it serves a purpose for the boys to be rescued. He repeatedly tells the boys to keep the fire lit on the top of the mountain, for the smoke will signal their presence to passing ships. “‘The fire is the most important thing on the island. How can we ever be rescued except by luck, if we don’t keep a fire going?... I tell you smoke is more important than the pig, however often you kill one…’” (Golding 86-87).…

    • 1429 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In the beginning of the novel, Jack couldn’t hurt a fly even though his life depended on it, however, by this point in the novel Jack has lost himself. He plans an attack on Ralph and his group for the eyeglass piece, injuring all of the boys severely just to make it so nothing could hold back his power. This way, Ralph would have to come begging back to Jack and yield to him in order to survive. Jack even sets out plans to have Ralph killed in cold blood. If it weren’t for the naval officer being there to prevent yet another death on the island, Ralph would have been deceased.…

    • 1113 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Instead, they burn down half the island and kill one of the boys. The fire that is being used as a signal for rescue turns into a symbol for destruction and savagery. After splitting from the group, Jack attempts to hunt and kill Ralph so that Jack can be the real chief. To do this, Jack “smoked him out and set the island on fire” (197). Ironically, it is the fire intended to kill Ralph that got the boys rescued by the naval officer.…

    • 943 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays