Savagery, Conch, and Setting Lord of the Flies By William Golding is based off the theme of savagery and also takes a look at civilization and symbolism. The story takes place on a island out in the middle of the ocean, where are two characters named Jack and Ralph who show leadership and savagery. This affected the boys throughout the story as they begin there friendship and take on many challenges. I think that these types of things still happen in today’s society. The theme of savagery is first shown by symbol of the conch shell and Ralph is given it to lead the boys back home.
This symbolises authority and control among the boys. At the first meeting Ralph says “I’ll give the conch to the next person to speak and he won’t be interrupted”. This proposes that Ralph is giving each boy an equal opinion. So whoever has to conch be able to speak and listened to by everyone. The island has become a democratic place which shows a well mannered side to them as they try to copy the homes they have just be taken from.
In the beginning the conch is blown to bring collect all the boys together. Ralph uses it and they come. This is a sign of its power, the boys were lost and now there is the conch, similar to a school bell calling them to be brought together. Ralph uses it to bring order to his place in which they have been stranded. They used it like a school, “We’ll have to have hands up like at school, Then I’ll give him the conch”(35).
The boys are making rules just like they had learned them in school. They also make the conch one way someone can talk at the meetings. The setting of the island had a big impact the boys. The island and there home are two different places because there was nothing the boys knew about the surrounding. The vines hung on the trees made the boys have nightmares because they thought they were snakes or beasties.
The boys greatest fear is what was unknown on the island and showed differences among the boys which set path to their end. Simon knew that there was nothing such as beasties, so he tried to banish the “beasties” to the top of the mountain. The setting had a huge effect in their stages of characters. They were civilized until the island tore them apart and made them uncivilized. They were alienated because of the island and it also brought out the evil inside of them. It went from hunting for food, to the death of Simon shows how they have completely lost their real inner bodies and moral values of society.
In conclusion, Lord of the Flies by William Golding is a book where the theme of savagery and civilisation is shown. Ralph shows civilisation as wants to put rules and let everyone have an fair say. Where as Jack, who represents savagery as he reigns over the other boys and is not interested in what boys have to say. Through the actions Golding shows us that we must have rules and impose them to keep society functions properly.