“Lord of the Flies” (LoTF) by William Golding was written after World War II. Golding himself joined the Royal Navy which inspired him to write this book. The book was based on an imaginary nuclear war and combined the values of society, a philosophical theory about human nature and the Christian Bible stories into this book to reflect his idea – ‘man produces evil as bee produces honey’. The term ‘Evil’ is a label which humans use to describe immoral actions that are not necessary for one’s survival. This idea of humans are evil when in a state of nature was strongly portrayed, however, LoTF also explored other possibilities of human nature such as civilization, rationality and logic. Nevertheless ‘Evil’ was the intended theme of this book and Golding’s idea about ‘man produces evil naturally’ does not hold because man produces ‘Savagery’ more often than ‘evil’.
With society comes rules, morals and ethics; contrary to savagery, society is where humans are strict to the values of society therefore savagery would be viewed as immoral therefore ‘evil’. The point is that without society and morals, ‘evil’ would be nothing but savage and animal instincts and this is where moral relativism comes in. Golding uses symbolism and allegory to compare the boys’ morals and values, while comparing the good and the evil. In chapter four, Ralph thinks shelters are the priority but Jack thinks meat is the most important; later the hunters made up a song about killing a pig while Ralph watched them and thought it was ‘misbehaviour’. This clearly implies that Ralph still holds the values of society (in the 1950s) and he symbolise morals, whereas the hunters already embraced themselves into the nature which symbolise savage and compared to Ralph they seem very ‘evil’ of their actions. However if civilization does not exist or Ralph died in the plane crash, then the action of the boys would seem totally reasonable since there is no morals and ethics to restrain the boys. The...
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