Foils In Lord Of The Flies Character Analysis

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In the allegorical novel Lord of the Flies, Golding incorporates violent imagery, personification, metaphor, and the characterization of Ralph and Jack as character foils in order to illustrate two vastly different approaches to creating a community; thus showing Ralph’s civilized leadership through intelligence and logic versus Jack’s savage leadership through intimidation and fear. In this scene, the reader views these two differing styles of leadership through the eyes of Simon, one of the older boys on the island. Jack and the hunters return from the forest marching as a group and proudly displaying their slaughter of a wild pig. Although, they are proud of their prized pig, they have neglected their responsibilities or keeping the …show more content…

The chanting shows a barbaric and violent mindset to the hunters, which conflicts with Ralph’s intellectual approach to organizing a fire in order to create a smoke signal. Ralph is focused on the importance of survival, while Jack is excited about the thrill of the hunt. Jack does not primarily hunt for food, but rather, he hunts to show his power and authority over others. This difference in priorities between Jack and Ralph creates tension between the two boys as when Simon looked “from Ralph to Jack...and what he saw seemed to make him afraid” (Golding 68). Jack and Ralph have conflicting ideas on how to lead the boys and survive on the island. However, their feelings of hatred towards each other is causing fear to spread within their groups. Although Ralph was voted the leader due to his knowledge and intelligence, Jack tries to gain control through violence bringing “a great stake”, which holds a “gutted carcass” with a “gaping neck” (Golding 68), showing him as the physically stronger and more aggressive leader. This violent imagery demonstrates the boys’ progressive decline from civilized to savage behavior. The boys, especially the hunters, begin to lose their civilized qualities while trying to adapt to surviving …show more content…

The use of the word “floating” gives their violence a sense of power and a feeling that it was inspiring the boys to this behavior. The use of the metaphor referring to the burnt out signal fire to “the bowl of blackened wood and ashes” shows the destructive result of the hunters’ actions. The mention of the burnt wood and ashes captures the feeling of failure and hopelessness, as the hunters may have ruined the boys’ best chance at being saved. Simon feels a sense of fear as he sees the impact of the boys choosing Jack’s savage leadership over Ralph’s intellectual leadership: a group wildly chanting over a dead pig and a unsuccessful signal fire. Through the distinction between the leadership principles of Ralph and Jack, one is able to see the contrasting approaches and how it affects the boys actions: leading them towards a path of civilized, humane actions or a path of violence and savagery. Jack’s leadership is connected to darkness and evil, including the carcass of the dead pig and the shouting for more blood and killing, foreshadowing the breakdown of the boys’ sense of civilization and order. In contrast, Ralph’s leadership illustrates faith in one another and an optimistic community, focusing on the rescue and survival of the group and creating a feeling of safety and

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