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'Lord of The Flies' Summary of the book
Lord of the Flies is a 1954 novel by Nobel-prize winning British author William Golding. Golding was knighted in 1988 and was a fellow in the Royal Society of Literature. In 2008, The Times named him third on their list “The 50 greatest British writers since 1945.”The title of Golding’s young-adult fiction novel is a reference to Beelzebub, a prince of hell.
During a wartime evacuation, an airplane crashes on a remote island. The only survivors are young boys, their ages ranging from middle childhood to preadolescence. Ralph, described as “fair” (7), seems delighted when he realizes there are no adults around, but soon Piggy, a fat, asthmatic boy, convinces him of the need to put things right and act proper. By blowing on a conch they find near the lagoon, Ralph calls the others together and becomes their leader. He makes three rules: to have fun, to survive, and to maintain a fire to signal any passing ships.
Opposing Ralph is Jack Merridew. He accepts Ralph’s leadership at first, but soon a schism opens up between them over leadership. The other boys don’t want to follow rules either: they tend to play instead of work. When Jack’s hunter clique lets the fire go out, the schism grows wider, as Ralph blames Jack for losing their chance at being rescued.
Meanwhile, the smaller children (termed “littluns”) grow afraid. They think a beast lives on the island. Simon, one of Ralph’s friends, says that maybe the beast is them, but Jack says he will kill the beast, manipulating the others into following him.
While the children are asleep, an aerial battle takes place over the island, and a dead pilot parachutes down. In the darkness, two boys tending the fire see something billowing and believe it is the beast. After Ralph, Jack, and Roger see the beast for themselves, Jack calls for the others to make him leader, and, when he receives no support, storms off to the other side of the island. His hunters go with him, and soon most of the others as well. From a bastion of stones they name Castle Rock, Jack and his hunters paint their faces, hunt pigs, and raid Ralph’s fire. They erect a pig’s head on a stick. Seeing it, Simon names it “Lord of the Flies” and believes it talks to him, warning him he is danger, that he was right and the beast is all of them, and that the hunters will kill him. When he rushes down to tell the other boys, who are holding a ceremonial dance, he is beaten to death.
Afterward, Jack decides to steal Piggy’s glasses, not only so he can start fires, but so Ralph can’t. They raid Ralph’s camp and take the glasses. When Ralph, Piggy, Sam, and Eric journey to Castle Rock to take the glasses back, Jack ignores Ralph’s authority. He captures Sam and Eric, then attacks Ralph. Above them, Roger loosens a rock that hits Piggy as it is falls, shattering the conch and killing Piggy.
That night, Ralph steals back to Castle Rock, where Sam and Eric tell him he is to be hunted. The next day, betrayed by Sam and Eric, Ralph flees the hunters, who try to smoke him out with a fire that eventually burns the entire island. Ralph kills or injures several hunters as he flees, and as the fire forces him to the beach and the hunters close in, he looks up to see a naval officer standing on the beach. The officer seems to understand what has happened. With heavily-armed ships standing out at sea, he tells the boys he will take them with him. (supersummary.com)
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