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Lord of the Flies: Character Analysis of Jack, Ralph, Piggy and Simon - Character Analysis of Lord of the Flies

Updated on June 19, 2013

Lord of the Flies - Character Analysis


Character analysis of Jack in Lord of the Flies

Jack Merridew is one of the stranded boys. In his previous life, he belonged to a group of chour boys, where he was the leader. They are said to have an angelic singing. He is around the age of twelve and belongs to the oldest boys on the island.

From the beginning, Jack wants to role the group, but his counter-part Ralph is chosen to have the lead.

The first time he goes on a hunt, he cannot kill a pig, but he claims that he will kill it next time. Soon, he and his group of choir boys are appointed the task of hunting. This was just the right thing to happen for Jack. Thenceforward, he kills pigs all the time and becomes more and more a savage.

Throughout the novel, Jack’s style of speech also changes. The first time he meets Ralph, his appearance is very babbit-like and he speaks like that, too. After he starts regressing from a twenty-first century human to a savage, his expression of ideas becomes steadily more irrational. This is best seen in a scene, where they discuss the probability of the existence of a beast, during an assembly. Piggy uses a very logical approach and he is quite mature in what he says. Jack, on the other hand, insults those who thing there might be a beast and has no convincing arguments. His insults are so strong it seems he is terrorizing those who think different.

Jack never really obeyed Ralph’s orders. Jack’s defiance put Ralph in a bad light as a leader. This thesis is underlined in a scene where they return from the castle rock and Jack wants to climg the mountain to look for the beast, but Ralph wants to return to the beach. In the end, Jack wins and Ralph goes with him (accompanied by Roger).

Jack falls more and more into the role of a savage and becomes more evil. In the end, Jack manages to become the new leader by taking advantage of the boys fear of a beast (promises them protection) and their hunger for meat. From then on, Jack diminished Ralph’s democratic society project and rules as a dictator in his tribe.

From an physical point of view, Jack starts out looking quite civilized. During their stay on the island, he becomes dirtier and at some point in the book, he paints his face. The last step towards savagery is seen in his necklace, which he wears. Much like a tribe leader!

Character analysis of Piggy in Lord of the Flies

Piggy is a fat, young boy and falls into the age of Ralph and Jack. He is the smartest person on the island and uses logical arguments to defend an idea. Even though his expression of thought in terms of words and grammar might be bad, the content is actually quite stunning for a young boy.

He also has to wear glasses. Over the course of the book, his glasses are more and more damaged, which can be seen as a symbol for the regressing society.

Jack hates Piggy for no rational reason. Jack probably knows subconsciously that Piggy’s intellect might prevent him from becoming the leader and turn Ralph’s democracy into totalitarianism.

Piggy represents the intelligent twenty-first century person.

Character analysis of Ralph in Lord of the Flies

: Ralph is chosen to be the leader at the beginning of the book. He blows a conch shell to induce an assembly. With his conch shell, Ralph is the allegory for democracy.

He recognizes Piggy’s intellect and as leaders normally do, he uses Piggy’s intellect carefully and for important decisions.

Ralph always insists on having a signal fire burning all the time. He knows that this is the only possible way of ever getting rescued. Jack, on the other hand, does not care at all what will become out of them.

Ralph also represents the twenty-first century modern guy.

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Copyright © 2012 by mbyL a.k.a. Slaven Cvijetic. All rights reserved.


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