Jack And Piggy: An Analysis

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Sheltered by those who hold it and coveted by those who lack it, since the dawn of civilization, power, or the ability to influence and control others’ behavior, has played a central role in human societies. The notion that one could have power over another was a major factor in the development of many organized civilizations, as having order and direction to society necessitated that someone, or a group of people, held power over everyone else. The idea of power, however, also led the creation of classes and hierarchies of people, which have for thousands of years been used to justify practices such as slavery and oppression. While power can be used for the benefit of society and the individual, too often is it abused and used solely for…show more content…
Later, it is decided that during an assembly of the boys, one can only speak if they hold the conch, further cementing its power. However, the power that is granted by the conch is attractive to the boys, leading to some conflict in order to obtain it. Golding writes, “Jack was up too, unaccountably angry. “Who cares what you believe---Fatty!” “I got the conch!” There was the sound of a brief tussle and the conch moved to and fro.” “You gimme the conch back!” (90) In this passage, Jack and Piggy wrestle for the conch in order to gain the right to speak, demonstrating one way in which the want of power can lead to conflict. The conch, though, is not inherently a corrupting influence. It is only a symbol of power, the true corrupter, for the boys, one that wanes throughout the book and is finally destroyed near the story’s climax. Also, the somewhat democratic system of speaking only when one has the conch, while resulting in some conflict, ensured that one person would rarely become too powerful. Another way that power leads to negative consequences in, “Lord of the Flies,” is Jack’s rise to power as a despotic ruler through the exploitation of fear, a rise that also has parallels to Adolf Hitler’s in
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