Human Nature in Lord of the Flies - Essay

Topics: Psychology, Behavior, William Golding Pages: 2 (799 words) Published: December 12, 2010
Authors often use their pieces of work and different literary elements to explain their philosophy on certain “ways of life” that humans possess. In Lord of the Flies, William Golding shows his view on human nature with his intense plotline of young boys getting stranded on a deserted island, trying to survive by themselves with limited resources, and then over time losing their sense of civilization. In the beginning the boys combine themselves under one, but as the story progresses, the boys create different opinions on survival thus creating divides in the group. This leads to several different altercations where the boys turn to behaviors that are barbaric. Throughout the book, Golding’s use of imagery portrayed the characters as cruel. It is through the description of their behaviors that Golding depicts a pessimistic view of human nature.

Across the text, the author has several examples showing his pessimistic views, but above all the one factor that shows the brutality of mankind is Jack’s constant behavior towards Piggy. Golding writes in one disagreement, “He took a step, and able at last to hit someone, stuck his fist into Piggy’s stomach. Piggy sat down with a grunt” (Golding, 71). The two main opponents in this argument were Ralph and Jack, but yet when Piggy made one statement agreeing with Ralph, he got punched in his stomach which caused him to smash his glasses. This violence is continued throughout the book, and it is directed towards Piggy by the others who have forgotten how to respect one another. This quote illustrates Golding’s pessimistic views by describing the many ways humans lose their sense of right and wrong. Over time, Jack’s usual behavior becomes nasty and vicious which holds against the humane ways of the world now, and rather dates back to the natural nature of animals. The violence that Jack expresses from time to time also shows the cynical character he has turned into without humanity surrounding him.

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