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Lord of the Flies: The Eternal Struggle Between Two Oppositions


The Darkness In Between Us

“I was considering the light. We’ll be stumbling about … We were going to try to find the monster … There will not suffice light”. In Lord of the Flies, the archetypes of light and dark act as recurring symbols. In this quote, Ralph hesitates of going to the top of the mountain in the darkness; he hesitates of the beast associated with dark and wicked. In addition to the conflict between Ralph and Jack (the Ego and the Id), the less apparent conflict between Simon and Roger mirrors that in between light and dark. In Lord of the Flies, William Golding utilizes the interplay of light and dark symbolically to express the allegorical meanings of excellent vs. evil and the human character.

Lord of the Flies is a novel filled with a huge selection of allegorical and symbolic significances, and amongst the most important is making use of light and dark to reveal the corresponding meanings of excellent and wicked. To begin, Ralph is presented as the “fair young boy” prior to the reader discovers his name. Through descriptions of physical appeal, “width and heaviness of his shoulders”, Golding makes Ralph a sign of good. All the young boys (apart from the choir and the littluns) vote for Ralph as chief as an outcome of these intense qualities. On the other hand, the monster is symbolic of the human worries of the unidentified. The boys fear the monster most in the evening;” [the littluns] dream and cry out [at night]. Although the young boys have worries from the start, it is not until the dead pilot falls that the young boys feel certain that there is a monster. Additionally, it is essential that Sam and Eric see the pilot in the early morning– when their vision is misshaped by the darkness. The darkness causes them to think they saw “the beast,” but they would have understood the reality had it been lighter. In addition, Roger– Jack’s executioner– is described as having a “shock of black hair … [that] appeared to match his gloomy face”.” [A] furtive young boy whom nobody understood, who kept to himself with an inner strength of avoidance and secrecy”, Roger’s dark tone and savage side is very first presented when he throws stones at Henry however” [tosses] to miss out on”. Roger feels there is a field of protection around Henry– the security of moms and dads, civilization, and the law. All of these conditions nevertheless, soon disappear as Roger pulls the lever to send out Piggy being up to his death. In contrast, Simon is the epitome of utter goodness and pureness. His goodness is revealed when he helps the littluns get fruit they can’t reach; none of the other boys care about the littluns, however Simon, a Jesus-like figure, tries to help everyone. He is further lit up when he meditates in the forest, in a tranquil place with butterflies and wildlife, in “a place where more sunlight fell”. With the use of symbols, William Golding expresses how the archetypes of light and dark can shape great and evil.

Golding also uses light and dark to describe the human personality. Jack, the apotheosis of savagery, can be regarded as the “Id” in the Freudian design of the mind. The Id is one’s source of energy and pleasure and it minimizes tension by action. The Id likewise consists of deathly instincts, like hostility and devastating tendencies, which are qualities that relate to Jack. Trembling behind his painted face, Jack feels stronger than ever in the darkness behind his mask, “liberating [himself] from pity and self-consciousness”. Given that the Id can’t think and does what it wants, Jack and his hunters leave the fire to go searching regardless of Ralph’s directions to tend to the fire. When the fire heads out, a ship goes by, representing how the Id can lead one into difficulty– whether it be showing violence and aggressiveness or entertaining sexual desires. In contrast, Simon represents the Superego, one’s ethical and moral code. Simon, bright and bubbly, just does what’s right; he never hurts anyone and might be considered a mystic. This is why Simon is the only one (apart from Piggy) to comprehend that the beast is a part of each and every one of the young boys. Ralph, nevertheless, discovers himself in the middle of the two extremes of the psyche. Ralph is the representation of the Ego, the “manager” who stabilizes the Id and the Superego. He is a sign of civilization and the Superego: he preaches the need for shelter, order, and a fire to get saved. However he also entertains the Id: he is “filled with pride” when he hits a boar with his spear. “I hit him alright. The spear stuck in. I wounded him!”, he states in pleasure. Through fantastic literature, William Golding explains how light and dark work as signs to express the human character.

Golding demonstrate how the island operates as a microcosm of society and the human personality through the symbolic interplay of light and dark. Through close reading and analysis, the reader can understand that Lord of the Flies is a remarkably crafted allegorical novel centered on the conflict in between civilization and savagery. Simon and Piggy represent goodness, civility, the Superego, intellect, and security. Jack and Roger represent evil, savagery, the Id, violence, and one’s dark desires. Ralph represents order, leadership, the Ego, and the requirement to be connected with the outside world. Lord of the Flies is relatable to readers because everyone has their own Simons, Jacks, and Ralphs. Golding wants his readers to be knowledgeable about what can take place when their Id– their desires and dark pleasures– takes control of. Golding’s story is regrettably one that is very much appropriate today, and might continue to be so for as long as society selects not to end wars and disputes.

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