The Beast as an Unconscious Way of Bringing Fear to the Subconscience in Lord of the Flies by William Golding

The children questioning of if a beast exists on the island reminds me of when I questioned if there was a monster living inside my room during the night. I would wonder if the monster was hiding in the closet, or under my bed, or if it was right next to my bed but I couldn’t see it. I couldn’t fall asleep because of the fear that the monster may eat me once I wasn’t looking. I got scared to the point where I would jump right out of my bed, rush to my mother’s room for comfort.

This experience reminds me of how the littleluns feel. It’s dark, your parents aren’t near you, and you’re all alone. To make these fears appear on a conscious level, the brain creates a monster and deepens our fears. However, just how I realized at the end that a monster does not live in my room, the beast does not exist in the island.

Not to mention, the child’s account of seeing the beastie was an allusion of his unconscious reaching to him.

The boy describing the beast of how, “It came and went away an’ came back and wanted to eat him (Golding 36)” is representing his fears slipping back in and out of his conscious. The beast wanting to eat him represented his own fears slowly eating him alive. The boy’s account of the thing turning into ropes that hang on trees during the morning represents of how his fears awaken at night when he feels more vulnerable than when it is morning and his fears live unconsciously and he feels more secure.

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Ralph also provided thoughtful insight of whether the beast existed or not. When the boy described how big the snake was, Ralph knew that a snake that big could not fit on the island: “You only get them in big countries, like Africa, or India (Golding 36)”. Ralph also pointed an important detail that the littlelun was probably dreaming. This is more common when the brain is stressed or exhausted and it confuses reality and dreams. Overall, the beast is the unconscious’s way of bringing fear into the subconscious.

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The Beast as an Unconscious Way of Bringing Fear to the Subconscience in Lord of the Flies by William Golding. (2022, Sep 27). Retrieved from

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