Conformity In William Golding's Lord Of The Flies

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In society, there are many standards that people must uphold to. In western society, it is uncommon for men to have long hair or for women to have short hair. Naturally, people will be conscientious of their differences between other people and try to change them or cover them up, and often times people who do not follow the standard are looked down upon. This leads to people trying to fit into the groups around them almost thoughtlessly. However, when people conform without thinking, it can lead to dangerous consequences. Often times, mindless conformity leads to senseless violence that could have been avoided with just a little more thought. In order to justify hateful and exclusive acts, the actions of people in minorities are often taken …show more content…

Instead of thinking about what they should do or what would be the best course of action, they begin to think only as part of the group, their opinions becoming merely extensions of the wishes of the majority. In Lord of the Flies, after Ralph and Piggy discover Jack’s group, a thunderstorm approaches, so the hunters perform a dance to make it go away. Golding then describes how the group conforms, saying, “Some of the littluns started a ring on their own; and the complementary circles went round and round as though repetition would achieve safety of itself. There was the throb and stamp of a single organism” (152). The littluns began copying the actions of the biguns instinctively, feeling that they would be safer if they did not stand out from the rest of the group. As everyone conforms together, the group takes on a life of its own as it begins to function less as separate parts and more as a single unit. This shows how they gain more power through their combined efforts. However, he uses the words “throb” and “stamp”, which are unpleasant sounding and closely related to wildlife, portraying the animalistic feeling of the group. This is further emphasized through calling the group “a single organism” instead of plainly stating that they are functioning as one. These descriptions suggest that the hunters are reverting to more primitive and savage behaviors. As they join together in the dance, there is less

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