Moderation is the Key to Success From history books to present day movie franchises, a message has been embedded in. As Robert Frost has written, “Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice… ” These two powerful forces may be completely different things with contradicting effects, yet they bring the same destruction. In the novel the Lord of the Flies, William Golding compares the fire to Jack’s passion in order to set an example for pushing the potential of positive attributes that could eventually to lead to destruction.
The author of Lord of the Flies uses the symbolism of fire to demonstrate the necessity of moderation as it is the key to success. The world is full of a variety of challenges, all bringing different types of trouble and chaos. Yet success can be achieved through one key device: moderation. Golding continuously develops this theme by enhancing the role of the fire.
At the beginning of the book, the fire symbolizes hope and excitement, often bringing happiness to the group of boys.
Even when the idea of “A fire, make a fire” is brought up, “the boys [got] on heir feet” almost at once (Golding 52).
A lively mood automatically replaces the originally gloomy atmosphere. Not only is building a fire fun to the boys, the fire builds a sense of security that reminds them of the secure environment of home. This only further boosts the Jolly mood of the group as whole. Yet the vast amount of happiness is created with minimum use of the fire. The fire only serves as a signal fire, serving no other advanced role. As the book progresses, the fire continues to evolve and grow in terms of importance. It begins to take on more and more esponsibilities until it takes part in the boys’ survival.
The fire continues to serve as a signal fire, but is now used to also cook meat. The boys gather around as “[the] fire [burns] on the rock and fat [drips] from the roasting pig meat into the invisible flames” drooling over the delicacy that sits inside the fire. While hunting the meat becomes the number one priority of the majority of the group, fire is Just as important as they need it to cook the meat. It becomes a symbol of power, as if whoever wields or has fire reigns supreme. It grows from a simple signal fire to a ymbol of power.
Not only did the fire work to satisfy practical uses, the fire creates a civilization. The simple little campfires sparks “the littleuns [to][become]wildly excited. They [dance] and [sing] and there [is] a partyish air about the gathering” after Just looking at it(Golding 187) . When the fire burns, the community grows stronger and more civilized. If the fire is not burning or is weak, they too are weakening. Thus, feeling a step closer to home, a simple campfire creates an atmosphere of Joy and excitement.
They aren’t focused on taking advantage of the bilities of the fire, but rather the hope and sense of civilization radiating off the fire. Golding wisely manipulates the fire to show different moderate uses of the fire to exemplify how success can come from simple and steady practices. While many benefits are brought from both fire and passion, the boys push the two to their greatest potentials, resulting in destruction. Jack starts a fire in order to smoke Ralph out. The fire grows out of control “[it] reaches the coconut palms by the beach and [swallows] them noisily’ (Golding 288).
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