Lord of the Flies. An Allegorical Tale. ALLEGORY.
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Lord of the Flies
An Allegorical Tale
Allegory is a form of extended metaphor, in which objects, persons, and actions in a narrative, are equated with the meanings that lie outside the narrative itself. The underlying meaning has moral, social, religious, or political significance, and characters are often personifications of abstract ideas as charity, greed, or envy. Thus an allegory is a story with two meanings, a literal meaning and a symbolic meaning.
Morality refers to the concept of human
ethics which pertains to matters of right and wrong
("good and evil“) on three levels:
The characters in Lord of the Flies have very different ways
of approaching problems and are guided by different moral
ways of thinking:
Ralph is lead by Common Sense and judges morality on
what makes the most sense for the group.
Jack is lead by raw Emotion and makes moral judgments on
the whim and will of his every emotion.
Piggy is lead by Intellect and scientifically calculates his
moral decisions and judgments.
Simon is lead by the Soul and looks inward for a sense of
moral purpose and direction.
The term “social” implies relations and interactions between peoples, and membership or belonging to a group. Social organization is also heavily related political rule.
Ralph represents fair and democratic government. He tries
to achieve unity between the boys on the Island and tries to
find balance between the opposing forces of the boys.
Jack represents a dictatorship full of one individual’s
tyrannical wants. He has the desire to get power and hunt .
He puts his own needs above the needs of other people.
Piggy represents technology and intellectual rule.
Simon represents socialism or humanism, political
affiliations aimed at working fairly and honestly for all
Ralph represents everyday man who is searching for
hope and salvation in a confusing and wicked world.
Jack represents the evil corruption within society. He
does not think beyond himself.
Piggy represents the pure intellectual who does not
understand spirituality and therefore cannot have faith
In his own salvation.
Simon represents a deep spirituality and faith in
Lord of the Flies is also a religious allegory of the Garden
The island is very much like Eden – a seeming utopia.
The beastie represents the snake (the devil) that tempts
Adam and Eve. That temptation – original sin – is evidence
of the innate evil within humans.
The boys exist in a state of frequent nakedness – a state
that Adam and Eve shared in the Garden of Eden.
Ralph and Jack are symbolic of Adam and Eve’s sons Cain and Abel.
Freud theorized that
humans are controlled by:
ID – emotional, instinctual
needs and wants
SUPEREGO – moral
conscience, tells us right
EGO – considers reality and
balances the needs of the id