In his novel Lord of the Flies, William Golding tells the story of a young group of boys who are trying to survive after being stranded on an island as the effect of their plane crash. While having to face many obstacles, the boys find several different items that become crucial symbols. Golding proves, with the use of symbols like Piggy’s glasses, the fire, the pig’s head, and the conch shell, that when separated from society, humans let the evil inside them dominate everything around them Piggy’s glasses that he wears ever since their arrival on the island symbolize the condition of the island in a few ways.
They symbolize civilization going out of control when separated from society. For example, the glasses were going to be used to make a fire to be rescued but instead they are stolen and used to set out-of-control fires.
Furthermore, the glasses were innocentjust like the boys are when they first arrive on the island, this changes over time.
Jack knocks Piggy‘s glasses off and breaks one of the lenses which ruins his vision greatly. As Piggy loses his ability to see, the other boys lose their ability to see what society should look like. In the beginning of the novel, Ralph says to start a fire to be rescued as that is the only way they will be found and continues to say this throughout the whole novel. The signal fire is there for any passing ships to see and rescue the boys.
When the fire goes out, all hope is lost to be rescued but when the fire is lit, it symbolizes that there is hope for them to be saved. Ironically, it is the fire that saves them all as Jack lit the fire in his attempt to hunt Ralph and kill him.
The pig’s head is brought into the novel as an offering to the beast from Jack’s tribe. It symbolizes the evil within every human being. The evil usually overcomes any good we possess and that is shown clearly by the way Simon dies. It is described as a laughing face because it is almost impossible to get rid ofjust like darkness is also, the pigs head is covered in flies leading us to conclude that it is in fact the “Lord of the Flies”. Ralph and Piggy discover the conch shell early in the noveli they blow in it and that brings the boys together since they hear the loud sound it symbolizes social order and power.
When they have meetings, only the person holding the conch can speak therefore earning the respect of the others. By the time the conch is destroyed, the boys civilized and organized has also been destroyed. The conch being destroyed shows that many problems being to arise and shows the transition the boys take into savagery. Lord of the Flies portrays the darkness that is hidden in all mankind and how it can control humans when separated from society’s rules. Throughout the novel, Golding uses objects like Piggy’s glasses, the fire, the pig’s head, and the conch shell to illustrate this important theme. Some of these objects may not seem like they have much value but in this novel it is shown to be much more when they have to survive without much, proving that evil is in every human beings.