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Lord of the flies - Referat



Lord of the Flies
By William Golding

About the author:

William Golding was born in Cornwall, England, in 1911 as a teacher’s son. After his graduation from Oxford in Science and English in 1935 he joined the Royal Navy and took part in the Second World War.
Golding returned to teaching in 1945. He worked part time in small theatre companies as writer, actor and director.
“Lord Of The Flies”, is a number-one-classic of modern literature.
William Golding was honoured by the Royal Society of Literature with a Fellowship in 1955, he was the winner of the Nobel prize for Literature in 1983 and was knighted in 1988.
He died 1993.
Golding was a great visionary writer and a great moralist. He also wrote short stories, dramas, essays and poetry.
William Golding is best-known for his themes of the struggle between good and evil and was a critic of modern society.


Summary:

Some boys, aged between five and twelve, are the only survivors of an air crash, which took place on a tropical island and seemed to be a paradise on earth. They should be evacuated by plane from England since the danger of an atomic war.
Two of them, Ralph and Piggy, find a conch and use it to call the other survivors. In their first gathering Ralph is chosen as the leader and tells them that the only chance to get rescued is to keep a signal fire, which is kindled with Piggy’s glasses. Jack, the school’s choir leader, soon becomes obsessed with the idea of hunting the pigs on the island, which causes a lot of trouble and rivalry between him and Ralph.
The younger boys begin to talk about a beast and soon everyone believes in such a creature, so Jack decides to hunt and kill this unknown thing but he fails because of his own fear.
Later, he leaves the group and more and more boys go with him to start a new tribe, the “savages”. They are painted, armed with spears and reigned by Jack. As a gift to the beast, they put the head of a killed pig on a spear and call it “lord of the flies”.
One night they celebrate their hunting-success with a primitive ritual dance and kill Simon. He only wanted to tell them the truth about the beast. As in fact, “the beast” is the dead pilot with a parachute.
Only Piggy and the twins Sam & Eric, called Samneric, are with Ralph and support him. Once, the savages attack them at night and steal Piggy’s glasses in order to be able to make their own fire.
Next day Ralph and his “group” go to Jack to get the glasses back and bring them onto the right way but Piggy is killed, Samneric forced to join the savages and the conch - still the symbol for their tribe – crushes. Only Ralph is able to flee.
Next day Jack and the savages fan out to kill Ralph. They set the woods on fire to find Ralph but he manages to run to the beach. There, he falls down wounded, exhausted and crying in front of a Naval Officer, who came because he saw the smoke and wanted to rescue them. He thinks that for the children everything must have been fun and games.

Characters:

Ralph: (Main Character)
Ralph is described as a 12-year-old, handsome boy, very likeable. He forgets things quite easy. First he recognises and treats Piggy as an outsider, but soon he finds out about his intelligence. He is a very good leader because he rules not like a dictator.
He is smart, thinks optimistic, and knows what’s important for the others. Ralph sticks to his ideas and because of his fairness he is willing to share his leadership with Jack.
He behaves sensibly and courageously and not a coward. As a chief he tries to cheer the others up.

Piggy: Piggy differs from the others. He is very fat and greedy and suffers from bad health and short-sightedness. He seems to have a less polished education than the other boys, however, he is the most intellectual of the children. But as he isn’t strong enough, he needs Ralph’s help in the group. In the course of the novel Ralph learns that he and Piggy are something like the king and his adviser.

Jack Merridew: Jack has also the makings of a leader but just the opposite of Ralph. Instead of being understanding he dominates his subjects and rules like a dictator or even a tyrant. He is egotistic and wants to control others, and he doesn’t care for the welfare of the other boys.
Jack enjoys the admiration, for this reason he more or less likes the situation on the island and so he doesn’t really want to be rescued.

Simon: Simon is really shy and sensitive, just due to the reason that he has a personality, which cannot express his ideas. The others don’t take him seriously and treat him like a crazy outsider. Although he is friendly and helpful nobody really accepts him because he is so batty and imaginative, that you can say he lives in his own world.
He takes life very serious and actually, he is the only one, who realises that the beast is not something one can kill because it’s inside the boys.

Sam & Eric: They behave like one person, for example they finish each other’s
sentences in the dialogues and are called Samneric. Maybe they aren’t influenced
by Jack’s tribe, because together, they are strong enough to resist him.

The navel Officer: He has a rather romantic view of how the life was like on the
island. In the End he appears like a knight in shining armour.


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