Symbolism in Lord of the Flies by William Golding

1159 words 5 pages
Gonzalo Barril Merino

Lord of the Flies Essay

Describe the use of symbolism in Lord of the Flies

By understanding symbols, you get a better picture of the novel “Lord of the Flies” and the hidden messages and references to human nature and a criticism of society.
The author, William Golding, uses a huge amount of symbolism to reflect society of the outer world with the island. Symbols of fire, the conch and water are described all throughout the novel. Fire represents hope, strength and knowledge, but it also represents disorder and destruction, switching from good and useful to evil and uncontrollable.
The conch, a precious shining pink shell, found by Piggy, rescued by Ralph, and later given to Piggy to hold, represents
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The conch represents democracy, civilization, unison, and group power. In chapters two, four, five, six, eight, ten and eleven, Piggy holds the conch tight ins his arms. When the rock hits him, the conch is destroyed in thousand white fragments, democracy is destroyed, and Ralph is let alone.

Water is presented all throughout the novel, but to get a better understanding of its power, it should be divided into three different symbols: seawater, the pool and the rain.
Seawater surrounds the island, and is constantly reminding the kids how far they are from home, and how lonely it can be. It also generates doubt in the kids, as seen in chapter five, “Beast from water” where they doubt the origin of the beast, believing a littlun that stated it came from water.
But, seawater finally brings hope and salvation, when the sailor rescues the kids. Therefore, seawater may cause lost hope, but it is also a symbol of salvation.
Inside the island, there is a pool that the kids use as a relaxing place. In the beginning of the novel, Ralph uses this pool to bathe and relax. The temperature was even warmer than him. The color, darker green in the deepest area, was attracting. The pool is a symbol of light and “aura cleaner”, because when Ralph ascends to the surface, Golding describes that “…a golden light danced and shattered over his face.”
Later in the novel, all the kids use the pool to relax after working, recollecting fruit,


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