Lord of the Flies PDF by William Golding
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William Golding's compelling story about a group of very ordinary small boys marooned on a coral island has become a modern classic. At first it seems as though it is all going to be great fun; but the fun before long becomes furious and life on the island turns into a nightmare of panic and death. As ordinary standards of behaviour collapse, the whole world the boys know collapses with themâ€”the world of cricket and homework and adventure storiesâ€”and another world is revealed beneath, primitive and terrible. Lord of the Flies remains as provocative today as when it was first published in 1954, igniting passionate debate with its startling, brutal portrait of human nature. Though critically acclaimed, it was largely ignored upon its initial publication. Yet soon it became a cult favorite among both students and literary critics who compared it to J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye in its influence on modern thought and literature. Labeled a parable, an allegory, a myth, a morality tale, a parody, a political treatise, even a vision of the apocalypse, Lord of the Flies has established itself as a true classic.
Reviews I read this book at the best possible time: in high school. The older you get, the easier it is to fool yourself into believing Lord of the Flies is total fantasy, but in an American high school it was too easy to see how unsupervised teens could turn on each other with the deepest, simplest malice and selfishness. It's pleasant to forget how it really was as you grow older, but miniature, tamer versions of this island feud are playing out in schools around the world. It's funny that it started with Mr. Golding turning to his wife and saying how funny it would be if someone wrote a book about what would really happen if boys were shipwrecked, as opposed to the happy boys-books fantasies. I've had to re-read several times as I've grown up, to make sure I don't forget. Aside from the profound nature of the book, it's very well-layered and paced. Golding had a great sense of the English language and applied simple prose wherever possible, bringing it to literary density at the best points, such as the prose-poetry scene where a lone child "meets" the Lord of the Flies. All the echoes of adult art, adult politics and adult society in this book are haunting, because this isn't just the primal mindset we came from - too often, it's where we still are, dressed up in a suit and tie.
I suspect that Lord of the Flies by William Golding hardly needs much of an introduction to anyone reading this. It's the story of a group of young boys (some barely out of diapers, some into their teens) who are stranded on an otherwise uninhabited island following a plane wreck. The kids establish a society that reveals the tension between savage tribalism and civilized governance inherent in most of the societies put together by grown-ups, too. Things go from care-free dilly-dallying and monkey butlers (just one at first, but he trained others) to horrifying and deadly warfare in a surprisingly short period of time. Also, they kill a couple of pigs, one literal and one figurative. Speaking of which, the allegory in this book is anything if not heavy handed in most places. Yes, you see boys' society mirrors our own. The conch shell represents law and order. The Beast represents the unknown, external, and mostly manufactured threats that bind men together. And at several points the "good guys" are trying to literally hold on to the flame of civilization while the savages try to put it out. Don't get me wrong --I enjoyed the book and got a lot out of it. I'm just noting that it's a good choice for challenging younger readers, too, since a lot of Lord of the Flies features easy to follow, textbook examples of literary devices like symbolism, allusion, and foreshadowwing. Plus it's got a bunch of kids stabbing each other with spears and smashing each other's brains out, and what youngster doesn't go in for that kind of thing these days? I also really liked Golding's prose in places. It's usually to the point, sharp, and elegant. But when he chose to, he could also linger over details and structure so that you really got a sense of place. I'm thinking of one passage in particular of nightfall on the island shortly after the boys arrive. It sets a mellow, peaceful tone very nicely and then later contrasts it with Ralph's frenzied flight through the same jungle as he runs for his life.
About my only complaint with the book was that outside of the few major characters like Ralph, Piggy, and Jack, the boys started to kind of blend together for me. Which one was Simon again? Roger? Sam? Eric? Apart from seeing how they were subject to a few key (and unfortunate) plot events, I kept losing track of these, but it's a minor complaint really.
Its hard having to go through everyday without fully understanding your self and your capabilities. Now imagine trying to work together with 12 more people in order to survive. Trying to hold everyone together and having people oppose at the decisions you've made. Not everyone is the brains not everyone is the creative one , but everyone must learn what they are the best at in order to provide that for a whole group and help themselves as they help others. This book is great as an example of nature vs nurture. These well educated boys get to an island and start to become savages. Not because of the way they were raised but because of the environment in which they are. This environment forces them to see life in another way and learn and do things they never thought they would be capable of.
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