Williams Golding’s Lord of the Flies is an allegory that explores the themes of totalitarianism and liberal democracy. Golding subtly implies his political views by insinuating liberal democracy, although flawed, is a superior governing system. He does this through the use of symbols, characters, setting and objects each of which represent real world political systems, leaders and attributes. Using Lord of the Flies as a commentary Golding expresses his political and personal views through symbolic means in the book that challenges its readers. The use of symbols in Lord of the Flies is a primary approach for William Golding to express his political and personal views. The shell is used to summon meetings in which the boys talk about problems and discuss possible improvements that could be made on the island. Much like a democratic parliament, where problems and improvements are also discussed for the better of the country. One of the main aspects of totalitarianism is the manipulation of individuals’ life actions and behaviours. The conch is the exact opposite, it offers an individuals’ right to speak and to give an opinion upon an issue. Whoever is in possession of the conch is the only individual permitted to speak at the time. “The conch. I got a right to speak” (pg58). The conch is an allegoric symbol of political legitimacy and democratic power. Once civilisation (democracy) on the island deteriorates, and the boys crumble into savagery (totalitarianism), the conch loses its power and democratic influences among the boys. When the conch is destroyed it showed an end to democracy on the island and a beginning for Totalitarianism. The characters in Lord of the Flies are what allow Golding to express himself through speech and emotions. The character who represents Totalitarianism and anarchy in the novel is Jack Merridew. Jack uses his power over the hunters to take over complete leadership of the tribe. He uses the fear of the...
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