Do you believe there is a beast within man that tempts us to do wrong and commit sin? Or is it just human nature to be sinful? In the bible, book of Genesis, it shows how God created Adam and Eve. These two beings had everything one could possibly imagine, food, water, shelter, and the protection of our heavenly father. Their only rule in The Garden Of Eden was to not eat from the forbidden fruit tree in the center of the garden, but Adam and Eve were flawed and soon fell into temptation from the serpent, and ate the fruit. They went against God’s only command and made the human species sinners.
In the novel, The Lord Of The Flies, a plane crashes on an uninhabited island leaving numerous boys stranded. These boys had to learn to survive without adults to make their food and provide shelter for them. At first they all agree to a chief, Ralph, and are willing to work together to build shelters, but as the novel reaches its climax, they turn savage which soon leads to the death of three boys. The author “William Golding” portrays that it is not human nature within ourselves that makes us act out, but when times are rough, violence and sin leads us away from the path of righteousness.
Symbolism is used throughout the novel to show that things put in this world tempt us to act out. The biggest illustration of symbolism in The Lord Of The Flies is in relation to “the beast”. The Beast was introduced on the very first day on the island. A little boy with a mulberry-colored birthmark on his face educated everybody of a so called Beast, which he had apparently seen on the previous night. At the time, this was overlooked by the older boys as something in his imagination.
As the story advances it becomes evident that the older boys begin to believe in this Beast. One evening Simon was spotted when returning from one of his nature walks, and Jack persuaded the others that he was the Beast. Each boy began pouncing on Simon, stabbing and beating him to death. This shows that a small thing, such as the serpent in the Garden of Eden, can cause fear and tempt us to do wrong, and in this case commit murder. Another example that holds much symbolic value throughout the story is the usage of the word “scar.
” When the plane crashes on the lush island, it disrupts the balance and harmony of nature untouched by man’s influence. The twisted wreckage of the plane creates an imperfection in the peacefulness of nature, and leaves the beach a “scar” of what it used to be, stunning and unharmed by man’s vicious impulse. An object which also attains much symbolic relevance as the story unfolds is the conch shell. Delicate, fragile, and white, the conch is what brings the boys together on the first day at the beach.
It is used throughout the story as an object of high importance and tradition, as it calls meetings together and determines who has the right to speak, depending on who is holding it at the time. It can be seen as a representation of law and order amongst the boys, as it unites them and prevents chaos from arising. As the book progresses, however, characters like Jack and his hunters put less and less importance in the sensibility and order in the concept of the conch, and finally disregard it altogether as chaos erupts over the island.
This symbolizes the struggle of civilization and savagery, as Jack’s hatred of Piggy and Ralph grows and he and his boys resort to primal urges like hunting and killing. It is shown throughout the novel that although it is man’s natural instinct to cause destruction, it is not human nature to sin. We are tempted into sin by those around us, and even our own mind sets. “William Golding” beautifully portrays that it is not human nature within ourselves that makes us act out, but when times are rough, violence and sin leads us away from the path of righteousness.
Courtney from Study Moose
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