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Lord of the Flies- Symbol of the Mask
Transcript of Lord of the Flies- Symbol of the Mask
Everyone at some time wears a mask. The mask has many different meanings-the literal, symbolic, and Lord of the Flies meaning of the mask. The symbolic meaning of mask has a theme behind it.
The Lord of the Flies is a group about a group of british boys who survive a plan crash in Word War II and get stuck on an island with no civilization or adult figure. Some of the boys work towards getting off the island, while chaos is going on on the island and a bunch of deaths occur. The boys turn from fearful children to savages because of the mask.
Symbol- A thing that represents something else that has meaning behind it.
Some other helpful words into understanding the mask:
Liberates- set free from a situation
Masks were made long ago for many different reasons as Lawerence talked about in her article. Some of these things are for hunting, drama, religious reasoning, grief, story telling telling and spirits. Masks may be used for things like this, but behind the mask lies a person hiding their true identity.
Goals and Objectives
Goal: I want my students to acquire the significance of the mask and how it corresponds with themes from their life. I would like them to interpret the meaning behind the mask in the novel and in real life circumstances. I want them to understand how the theme of the mask is relevant in everyday life. According to Bloom's taxonomy, my lessons is the second highest on the scale, which means it's pretty complex. My students will bee able to transfer there skills into real word situation by not letting their masks overtake them and not letting their mask change their inner seves.
Lord of the flies
Symbolism of the mask
English 8H,Period 1
December 15, 2014
The symbolic meaning of the mask is to hide people's true identity and reveals their true nature.
Lord of the Flies Meaning
The mask in Lord of the Flies hides who Jack and his group truly are and brings out the savages in the boys.
According to Jeanne Z. Lawerence in her article called, "Masks and Their Meaning", a mask covers the face and is made for various reasons including protection, disguise, to honor spirits, religious reasons, storytelling, and for hunting.
The conflict in the society is that when people have these masks on, they aren't there true selves and they act like a totally different person.
DEFINE key terms
IDENTIFY how real life events relate to the symbol of the mask and its theme
EXPLAIN how symbolism is used to get a theme across
ANALYZE how events in their own life is like the mask
CONVINCE the class that they should be themselves and not have to hide behind a mask.
PROPOSE a solution to the issue of people wearing masks.
Masks can liberate people's identity
Golding uses symbolism to show the mask can liberate people's identity and because of this, it influences others.
The mask creates a false perception of a person.
Jack and his group want to be "hid, liberated from shame and self-consciousness" (64).
Jack and his group liked to be freed from their shame, and they wanted all their insecurities to be lifted from their mines.
Some people like to have a mask so all the bad they have done gets lifted off their shoulders.
The mask makes actions easier without taking ownership for wrong doings.
When the boys want to steal the fire from the other group, the mask makes it easier for them to "steal up on one" (54) so that "they wouldn't see"54) their real appearances.
Because of Jack and his group's new identity, they are preforming actions they normally would not think of doing in order to survive.
When people wear a mask, they do unnecessary actions and put others in danger.
The mask shows people wearing the mask will try to conform others.
When Jack and his group took Sam and Eric away from Ralph, Jack realized they weren't painted and asked them, "how can you?" (188), and "if it were light shame would burn them at admitting these things" (188).
Jack and the others wearing the mask will try and convert others into wearing the mask and make them feel bad for their wrong doings because they aren't wearing a mask.
Because people wearing a mask are liberated from their actions, they make others feel bad for being themselves
Masks can hide a person's true identity
Golding uses the symbolism to show the mask can hide a person's true identity.
First the mask demonstrates that anonymity frees people from shame and self-consciousness.
When the boys want to hunt, they believe they need a mask for hunting so that the animals can't see their faces so they put on "dazzle paint" (63) for "trying to look like something else" (63)
The boys think that being anonymous will help them hunt to become the savages that they are.
When people become anonymous, they feel like they are free from self-consciousness and all their insecurities.
Second, the symbolism of the mask shows ignorance, fear, and apathy are "mankind's essential illness".
When the boys believe there is a beast on the island, they are all in fear, which causes the boys to put on the masks. The boys hunt and say, "We're strong- we hunt! If there's a beast, we'll hunt it down!" (91)
When the boys put on the mask and become anonymous, they step out of their comfort zone and turn into savages by hunting.
When people want to hide their fear, they cover themselves behind a mask and make themselves anonymous in order to liberate their fear.
Third, the mask shows humans are essentially savage, and society is a mask that hide their true identity.
When the boys eventually put their masks on, the "mask compelled them" (64).
The mask compelling Jack and his unleashing their true identity and that society was hiding the savages in the boys.
People feel free of judgement when they are anonymous.
Need for the mask
Golding uses symbolism to show most people need the mask because they are afraid of being judged but some people don't
Leader use masks to show they are in power.
When Chief Jack was sitting with his group, his "blush was hidden by the white and red clay" (161).
Although Jack is the leader who should be the strongest both physically and emotionally, he essentially needs the mask because the mask helps him hide his true emotions.
People who wear the mask need the mask to hide how they truly feel.
People are nothing without their mask
The mask shows people wearing it are nothing without it.
When Jack first puts on his mask and looks into the mirror, "he looked in astonishment no longer seeing himself but an awesome stranger" (63).
Jack with his mask is a complete stranger but Jack without his mask is someone who is insecure and not his true self.
People can't reveal their true selves without their mask because people are afraid society will judge them.
Not everyone needs a mask
Not everyone needs a mask in order to reveal their true nature and hide their true identity.
When Ralph and his group plan their attack on Jack and his boys, they state how they "understood only too well the liberation into savagery that the concealing paint brought" (172).
Ralph and his group knew only too well about what the mask had done to the other group, and they knew they didn't want to have a false perception like the others.
Some people see beyond the mask and don't care about being judged.
The novel Lord of the Flies is an allegory for the real world. The main allegorical significance is how the novel shows without civilization, savagery takes over. With no order, chaos will continue to happen. Without civilization people will deteriorate their inner selves.
Here are some essential questions to explore:
How does anonymity free people from shame and self-consciousness?
How does anonymity reveal people's true nature?
How does anonymity liberate people from how they act?
How can appearances be deceiving?
Making Thematic Connections
Here are the themes and supporting themes that the mask demonstrates in Lord of the Flies.
Masks and labels can hide or reveal a person's true identity
Anonymity frees people from shame and self-consciousness
Humans are essentially savage and society is a mask that hides their true identity
A person's appearance is a mask that hides his or her true identity.
Makes actions easier
Examples of masks in real life
Here are two examples.
The thespian mask represents two face, one happy and one sad. The people who are acting have to act one way on stage when in he inside may feel the complete opposite. For an example, when a character has to act sad in their role, on the inside they might be happy because they are on stage doing what they love. Another example is when a character has to act happy in their role, and on the inside, they are actually sad, because maybe they messed up.
The poem "We Wear the Mask" by Paul Laurence Dunbar. This is a poem about people wearing a mask on the outside when they feel different on the inside. A line from the poem says, "With torn and bleeding heart we smile". This shows how on the inside, these people feel broken and sad but they act and appear like they are happy. This is a real life example on how the mask play a role in reality.
Golding, W. (1962). Lord of the flies. New York: Coward-McCann.
Masks and the Stories behind Them. (n.d.). Retrieved December 14, 2014, from http://www.yale.edu/ynhti/curriculum/units/1998/3/98.03.07.x.html
Shmoop. (2008, November 11). Body Paint in Lord of the Flies. Retrieved December 14, 2014, from http://www.shmoop.com/lord-of-the-flies/body-paint-symbol.html
We Wear the Mask - Dunbar. (n.d.). Retrieved December 14, 2014, from http://www.potw.org/archive/potw8.html
Putting it all together
The mask has many different meaning like the literal, symbolic, and Lord of the Flies meaning. Behind the mask has many different themes. One of these main themes is people wear a mask to hide or reveal a person's true identity.
What are some masks in the real world and themes that connect to it?
A solution to the problem of people wearing a mask is that people should be themselves from the start.
The messages that were learned from these themes are everyone shouldn't have to hide behind a mask and everyone should be themselves without being afraid of getting judged. Everyone in the world is different and those differences make everyone unique.
Students in the future can just act themselves and not care whether they are judged. Not everyone has to be the same or follow the mob mentality.
The world would change if people changed and didn't wear a mask because everyone would have different inputs on things. Not everyone would wear and dress the same and not everyone would act the same.