The novel, The Lord of the Flies, written by William Golding was published by Penguin Putnam Inc. in New York, New York. The copyright date is 1954. Take a group of privileged school boys from a sophisticated background and send them through a horrific ordeal.
Then leave them to live without adult supervision in an environment hostile and alien to their normal life. The Lord of the Flies is Golding’s examination of human behavior during a life or death situation.
The setting of this book was an unfriendly island. This island was the story. It was a complete change of environment for the young boys who were used to their city life. They had to now learn to survive on their own. So, first challenge a group of boys to survive a terrible plane crash. Then left alone without supervision they band together for security until opinions from leaders force two groups to emerge. The environment is one of the main characters. It makes the boys do things that they aren’t accustomed to doing. The groups begin their own primitive societies based on what they know from experience and home, and what it takes to live in their new environment.
They have to deal with all the major aspects of life. Where to get food, how to make shelter, how to stay warm when it’s cold. Then they are faced with establishing order within their groups. Should there or shouldn’t there be rules? Who should lead? The boys have to do for themselves what has already been done for them. Are they able to survive on a hostile environment without the structure of an established society? The two main leaders Ralph and Jack have strong differences of opinion on how they should lead the group and survive. This becomes the conflict in where the two boys split apart and jack forms a new group and is open to anyone that would like to join. This affected the characters by changing how they acted and lived. Jack didn’t like that Ralph wanted to carry on in the way they did in England with rules and a structured law system. Jack wanted to rid of rules and rule the island as he wanted. He acted out as a savage, painted their faces, speared pigs, ran around like cavemen.
I felt that considering the environment the boys were thrown into I m not surprised at the way they acted. Boys are boys and the fact that there were no other people on the island with no laws or a structured society they acted out. People wouldn’t act the way they do if there were no rules or organization. It is only the pressure of those things that men act the way we do. My critique is that I enjoyed the book. The story is written very well and I was interested the whole time. I don’t think I could identify myself with any of the characters but some characters reminded me of people I know. Jack reminded me of some people that I know in my life. Jack was overconfident and acted tough.
I know people that will act like that and also if you prove them wrong they will always come back with something else o they don’t look stupid. The author, William Golding, did an excellent job on this novel. The description of the setting, and the characters personalities and appearance was great. There was so much imagery in the story and that was great because it helps people like me to visualize the description in my head. There was a lot of dialogue. It was good to have it but sometimes there was too much. With all the conflicts in the story Golding definitely created a sense of suspense. I could practically hear the suspenseful music coming from the book as the savage boys were running after Ralph toward the end of the book.
I would definitely recommend this book to others. I know that although this is a required book for most high schools it should still be read by people who haven’t read it. I think the age group for this book should be for young adults who will have a better understanding for the story than younger readers. The Lord of the Flies, I thought was an excellent book.