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Lord of The Flies Literary Analysis

In the novel Lord of The Flies Ralph is one of the main characters but there is also something special about him that sets him apart from all the others. In the beginning of the novel, he started off as a proper British boy who was pretty much harmless. Not much later he turned into a savage just like all the others. He was one of the most dynamic characters of the entire novel. As the boys were on the island, they started becoming more savage and developing more barbaric features, that would eventually shape who they are. Overall, Ralph has had a very big evolution throughout the novel, and there were a few elements that greatly impacted his changes, which after all might not be a very good thing.

One of the elements played a big part in the book immediately when he saw the naval officer. The element of savagery had a big role in this because right then and there Ralph had realized that he had become a savage just like all the others. He grasped the idea of all that he had done and instantly wanted to get rid of it so he started to cry and was very scared, and he was showing a great wave of grief. “He gave himself up to them now for the first time on the island; great, shuddering spasms of grief that seemed to wrench his whole body.” (page 202, chapter 12). This shows how Ralph is realizing how much damage they have done to themselves and others. Then later in the book the boys start becoming more and more bloodthirsty, even towards each other. This creates a big problem for Ralph because the boys end up turning against him and they start trying to hunt him down. “Certainly no one would attack him here” (page 192, chapter 12). This shows how much they have turned into savages themselves, because he has it on his mind 24/7 that he needs to hide from them or else they might end up killing him. It shows it here in this quote that he was trying to avoid all of the other boys, because in his mind they were all after him to kill him. This also shows the savagery that has built up in each and every one of them, and this quote just proves how blood thirsty they have become. Although Ralph may not be the most barbaric out of all the boys that were on the island, he definitely shows signs of becoming more and more savage. Ralph has finally started to see how much he really needs to change back, from being savage, if he wants to fit in with the normal outside world, and not just have to hide from the bad things in life.


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Ralph started off sane and as leader, but eventually changed into a savage, just like all of the other boys on the island. In the beginning they started off fine, with no barbaric or savage like features to them. “You could see now that he might make a boxer, as far as width and heaviness of shoulders went, but there was a mildness about his mouth and eyes that proclaimed no devil.” (page 10, chapter 1)  This quote is showing just how much he has evolved into a barbaric soul and doesn’t really realize it. While he is being chased by the boys and the fire, and starts to think about what would happen if they were never to be rescued or even seen. Shows how he has a chance of turning back to his good old ways when he was harmless. Towards the end of the novel Ralph shows a little bit of hope to changing back to how he used to act instead of staying savage like all of the boys, which is a very good sign. Another part in the book, Ralph starts showing a sign that he may not become as barbaric as all the others, which indeed would be good for himself and everyone else. “‘Kill the pig. Cut her throat. Bash her in.’ Ralph watched them.” (page 75, chapter 4) In this quote, Ralph is taking a step back and just seeing how all of the other boys are acting, and he starts to come to a consensus that it isn’t a very good thing. Ralph has always had that barbaric element to him, but most of the time he has just been denying it!

Overall, Ralph has gone through a huge evolution of changes that is continuing to grow. Many of the elements in the novel have affected his decision making and they are now affecting who he is as a person. Others might argue and say that Ralph didn’t really change much, but if you look deep enough into it you can see that he did. Throughout the novel Ralph was the most interesting character to follow because there were many different elements that were involved in the making of his character!

Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. New York: Coward-McCann, 1962. Print.

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