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Lord of the Flies

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Rebecca Rohn

on 6 June 2013

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Transcript of Lord of the Flies

Ralph: Rebecca Rohn "Lord of the Flies" Analysis In the novel "Lord of the Flies", William Golding implies that the destruction of a society is caused by the inability of its leaders to understand the perspectives and needs of other people. Thesis: Archetypal Approach: Archetypes deal with common personality traits that are present in many people. The archetypal critical approach deals with how the author uses characters who represent various archetypes to make a statement about life which goes beyond those individual characters. An archetypal approach deals with the designs of the human subconscious. (Blackmon) Archetypes in Lord of the Flies: Ralph: Hero/Leader
Jack: Villain; Power-Hungry; Violent; Dangerous
Piggy: Scapegoat; Adult-Like
Roger: Enforcer; Savage; Decline of society Ralph is the archetypal hero/leader. His one desire is to get the boys rescued from the island. When he is elected leader, he decides that the most important thing is to make a signal fire and keep it lit in order to signal passing ships. He becomes obsessed with keeping the fire going and attempts to keep the boys civilized. Ralph attempts to use speeches rather than violence to motivate the boys and get them to follow his command. However, Ralph often uses Piggy as an aid in coming up with ideas rather than to come up with them himself. Archetypes in William Golding's Lord of the Flies Ralph: Primary Quotes: "'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? Is a fire too much for us to make?'" (Golding 74)

"'Can't you see we ought to-ought to die before we let the fire out?'" (Golding 74) Ralph: Secondary Quote: "he figures out ways to get rescued by passing planes and keeps the boys civil while on a new land with no rules" (Bodine) Jack: Jack is the archetypal villain. He is power-hungry and when challenged becomes violent and dangerous. Once he gains power he uses it to hurt others. He slowly turns from a British school-boy into a savage and becomes obsessed with hunting the pigs on the island. At one point, he allows the signal fire to go out because he goes hunting while he is supposed to be tending it. This leads to the beginning of the friction between Jack and Ralph. Jack: Primary Quotes: "'Ralph thinks you're cowards, running away from the boar and the beast'" (Golding 117)

"'We'll hunt. I'm going to be chief'" (Golding 123)

'"about the beast. When we kill we'll leave some of the kill for it. Then it won't bother us, maybe'" (Golding 123) Jack: Secondary Quote: "Jack wants power through violence and control" (Shank)

"His violence makes him powerful because he uses fear to control the other boys" (Shank) Jack vs. Ralph Ralph and Jack come into conflict with each other because they disagree on what is most important for the survival of the group - the fire or hunting. This begins the destruction of the island society because the leaders cannot see things from each other's perspective. They have very different opinions and make Golding's message about society's leaders evident. Although they originally attempt to work together and compromise, it eventually becomes impossible when both of the boys become fixated on their individual goal. Piggy: Piggy is the archetypal scapegoat. Jack and the other boys often take out their own frustrations on him even though he is not to blame. In addition, Piggy is arguably the most intelligent and responsible boy on the island. He is very adult-like and yet the other boys do not often acknowledge his clever ideas. He is constantly fretting about how the adults will react to the boys' actions when they are rescued and tells them that they need to act more mature. Piggy: Primary Quotes: "'The first thing we ought to have made was shelters down there by the beach. It wasn't half cold down there in the night. But the first time Ralph says 'fire' you goes howling and screaming up this here mountain. Like a pack of kids!'" (Golding 40)

"'How can you expect to be rescued if you don't put first things first and act proper?'" (Golding 40) Piggy: Secondary Quote: "Piggy constantly warns the boys about their behavior and foolish ways" (Bodine) Roger: Roger is the archetypal enforcer. He also represents the decline of the island society as he realizes there are no rules and becomes violent and savage. In the beginning of the book, he throws rocks at a younger boy, not intending to hit him because he has been trained to abide by the rules of society. However, when Roger realizes that there is no one on the island who will enforce those rules, he embraces violence and even enjoys it. He laughs when he tortures a pig that the group was hunting and becomes an enforcer for Jack. Roger: Primary Quotes: "Roger took up a small stone and flung it between the twins, aiming to miss. They started and Sam only just kept his footing. Some source of power begun to pulse in Roger's body." (Golding 162)

"The yelling ceased, and Samneric lay looking up in quiet terror. Roger advanced upon them as one wielding a nameless authority" (Golding 168) Roger: Secondary Quotes: "When Roger throws stones at Henry, Golding shows that the seed of anarchy has taken root" ("Lord")

"Roger symbolizes man's natural tendency to cause harm to others" ("Lord") Piggy vs. Roger The characters of Piggy and Roger act as foils to each other and enforce Golding's point about society. While Piggy is focused on keeping everybody civilized and peaceful, Roger is slowly declining into anarchy and savagery. Eventually, it is Roger who causes Piggy's death when he releases the boulder which knocks Piggy off of the cliff, killing him. These contrasting characters are also contrasting archetypes who often come into conflict in any society - the civilized and the uncivilized. Works Cited: Blackmon, Samantha. "Critical Approaches." Cla.perdue.edu. Perdue University College of Liberal Arts, 2013. Web. 4 June 2013. <http://www.cla.perdue.edu/blackmon/engl360k/critical.html>
Bodine, Brittany. "Lord of the Flies (Archetypes)." Storify.com. Storify, 2013. Web. 4 June 2013. <http://storify.com/evannarox/lord-of-the-flies-archetypes>
Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. William Golding's Lord of the Flies. Eds. James R. Baker and Arthur P. Ziegler, Jr. New York: Perigee, 1988. 1-187. Print.
"Lord of the Flies: Character Profiles." Novelguide.com. Novel Guide, 2012. Web. 4 June 2013. <http://www.novelguide.com/lordoftheflies/characterprofiles.html
Shanks, Cindy. "Character Analysis: Jack in Lord of the Flies, by William Golding." Helium.com. Helium Inc, 2013. Web. 4 June 2013. <http://www.helium.com/items/2080379-jack-lord-of-the-flies>
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