A beast can take on many forms in the eyes of different people, from the darkness under a child’s bed, to the inner demons within each person Author William Golding uses this concept to display different themes in his novel, Lord of the Flies. The character of the “beast” evolves throughout the story to represent intriguing and abstract subjects as the plot progresses. In The Lord of the Flies, a novel by William Golding, the “beast” is initially the boys’ fear, then a representation of war, and ultimately the savagery of human nature. Initially, the “beast” was introduced as a figment of the boys’ imagination, brought about by fear. It was at the first assembly, in which a littlun asked about, “the snake-thing” (Doc B). At first, the boys …show more content…
The “beast” is given a physical form, a dead parachutist. The body falls onto the island by, “a battle fought at ten miles’ height,” and is first seen by Samneric (Doc D). In the dead of night the boys can’t see clearly and run to Ralph saying, “We saw- the beast,” (Doc D). At this point in the story, fear and tension amongst the boys rise due to the alleged sighting of the “beast”. However, the war which produced the body, is the real “beast” and sets the boys’ mini war in motion. Joyanta Dangar calls war the, “off-stage protagonist,” and suggests that it is not just , “mere occasion,” (Doc C). The setting of war helped propel the plot and the boys’ actions. However, author William Golding, previously a WWII solider in the Royal Navy, questioned the humanity of war by saying, “was [war] made by something inhuman and alien- or was it made by chaps with eyes and legs and hearts?” (Doc C). The presence of war causes a change in the boys’ actions. They become more savage and even murder some of their fellow schoolmates. There was no physical “beast” that killed anyone, only the war which justified the violent and cruel actions. The boys use war as an excuse to torture and murder; it is the true “beast” in the …show more content…
The first time Simon mentions this concept is at an assembly. He began by saying, “maybe it’s only us,” but struggled to express his ideas on, “mankind’s essential illness,” (Doc F). The next time the boys’ inner evil is brought up is during Simon’s hallucinatory conversation with the pig’s head, when Simon discovers the “beast” is only a dead parachutist. He then, “sets off, weak and staggering, to tell the other boys that the beast is human,” (Doc E). There is a duel meaning behind Simon’s statement. The “beast” not only has a physical form of a human, it also represents the savagery of human nature that is displayed through the boys. Throughout the novel, the boys slowly lose their sense and morph into horrendous and violent monsters. The most prominent example of this savagery is during Simon’s murder. A very “beast”-like and aggressive vocabulary is used during this scene to describe the boys attack on Simon, including, “leapt… screamed, struck, bit, tore… and the tearing of teeth and claws,” (Doc F). While these words are expected to be used to describe a monster, they describe the boys instead. This encounter with the “beast” was not a fight against a physical being, it was a manifestation of the boys’ savagery. As time passes and tension amongst the boys rises, the inner evil and savagery becomes more evident through the murders of Simon and Piggy. The true “beast”
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“We saw-” “-the beast-”. In the Lord of the Flies by William Golding, there were a group of English Schoolboys. They roamed around on a deserted island, a war was going on in the near future. There are many possible things a “beast” can be. The definition of a “beast” evolves throughout the story.
Savagery, uncivilized, and hypocritical children have clouded their judgment when trying to figure out if there is a real beastie. A monstrous figure frightens the juvenile boys that landed on this forsaken island. In the Lord of the Flies, these English boys are all alone to defend for themselves, thats when it all unravels. This mythical monster sooner called the “beast” is symbolized a fear of a mistaken beast, as the darkness of war, and the evilness of humanity waiting to be unleashed.
Usually, when the term “beast” is mentioned, negative connotations are developed. In Lord of the Flies, the meaning of the entire story is determined by the symbolic definition of the “beast”. Lord of the Flies surrounds a group of boys stranded on an island. The presumed idea of a beast materialized and spread amongst the group.
Goulding describes Simon as a dark figure crawling out of the forest. It causes the boys to feel uncertainty that the figure was the beast. “A thing was crawling out of the forest. It came darkly, uncertainly” (Pg. 152). The boys then beat Simon to death thinking he was the beast out of fear and irrational thinking because of their fearfulness.
With the outbreak of World War II in Europe, a group of British schoolboys decide to leave their homes and board a plane to safely evacuate the area. Unfortunately, their plane is shot down. The young boys become stranded on an uninhabited island with a “tangible” fear of a “beast.” This fear distracts the boys from their main priority of building a signal fire in hopes of being rescued from the island. The existence of the “beast” allows the boys to obsess with killing this creature and increases their level of savagery.
Although the other boys laugh off Simon’s suggestion, Simon’s words are central to Golding’s philosophy of anti-transcendentalism, that innate human darkness exists. Simon is the first character in the novel to see “mankind’s essential illness” which in turn, shows the beast not as an external force but as a component of human nature. Simons deep understanding of the beast is further expressed in his hallucination or his “discussion” with the lord of the flies that he has after one of his fainting spells, “There isn't anyone to help you. Only me. And I'm the Beast...
Manipulation to create power One powerful tool to gain power over an induvidual is minipulation. In goldings novel lord of the flies many characters are minipulated and power changes hand through many characters. The key character that creates power through manipulation is jack. The three ways he uses this manipulation is by violance , food and fear. One of the most powerful forms of manipulation that jack uses in the novel is fear.
This shows that the boys are only afraid of themselves, because they are their own worst enemy. He is the first to figure out that the beast is not an actual beast, and how it is only the boys becoming savage, and starting to be afraid of one another. As Simon began to explain this to the doubtful boys, he was the only one who died knowing the
As it is known, a beast is frequently associated with fear. As the English boys are on the island that they have run away to, it is shown that they encounter things that petrify them. Found in Document A is that the boys externalize their fears into the figure of a beast. Also stated in Document A, is that a mother’s job is to “dispel the terrors of the unknown”. In other words,
The collective fear of the unknown leads to the untimely and accidental death of Simon. The distress present in the boys causes their impulsive action, of Simon’s horrific murder. Fear of “the beast” an imaginary creature causes the boys to act irrational, and provokes survival instincts as a result of life threatening terror. The fear of the boys in this moment is epitomized when they chant, “Kill the beast!, Cut his throat, Spill his blood!” (168).
“...fear can’t hurt you anymore than a dream. There aren’t any beasts to be afraid of on this island... Serve you right if something did get you, you useless lot of cry-babies” (79). When Jack, a main character in Lord of the flies said this, he didn’t believe in the fear that was growing within the boys or that it could cause harm to them. Lord of the flies by William Golding is centered around how fear can take over one 's mind and make them lose control of themselves within it.
(Golding, 77). Although the boys laugh at Simon’s idea, his belief conforms Golding’s idea that inner evil exists. The boys develop into the beast when they kill Simon. Simon was desperate to explain the unidentified creature on the mountain but the boys weren’t in the mood for listening to him. With his brutal murder by the other boys, chaos takes over civilized order on the island.
In comparison, the boys in Lord of The Flies continue to be afraid of a creature called the Beastie and spend their time trying to kill it. “You did the other day. You said they dream and cry out. Now they talk- not only the littluns, but my hunters sometimes-talk of a thing, a dark thing, a beast, some sort of animal.” (83).