Lord of the Flies is a novel written by William Golding. This article analyses which system is implied in Lord of The Flies by making an analysis of the book by referring to certain parts of the novel.
“Lord of the Flies” is a novel of William Golding, in which the great writer wrote about two opposite politic views, political democratic system and allegory politic system. In this writing essay, firstly, I will define what a political democratic system is, then I will write some quotations from “Lord of the Flies”, and from some writers and philosophers and in the end, I will touch upon these quotations and the contrast between the quotations from the book and the quotations taken from philosophers. The goal of this essay is to add to our understanding of the relationship between the events that took place in Lord of the Flies and democratic politic system.
I want to begin with an overview of what democratic politic system is. Democratic political system is a system in which every citizen has their own rights to speak and opine what they think about the government. Elections are free and fair in democratic system and every citizen is able to participate in these elections. After choosing leaders to lead the citizens and run the government, leaders should attach importance on each citizen’s thoughts and ideas. Lastly, every citizen can criticize the government and the regime of the government, if they are not satisfied with the regime of the government.
There are many quotations in “Lord of the Flies” that symbolize democratic politic system. I want to show some of these quotations by giving references from philosophers.
“ ‘Him with the shell.’/‘Ralph! Ralph!’/‘Let him be chief with the trumpet thing.’/ Ralph raised a hand for silence. /‘All right. Who wants Jack to be chief?’/ With dreary obedience the choir raised their hands./ ‘Who wants me?’/ Every hand outside the choir except Piggy’s was raised immediately. Then Piggy, too, raised his hand grudgingly into the air./ Ralph counted./ ‘I’m the chief then.”(Golding, 19)
As we read the paragraph, quoted from “Lord of the Flies” we see some symbols of democracy and democratic power. As I wrote before, in the overview paragraph, democratic political system is a system in which everyone participates in elections and leaders are chosen by fair elections. In this part of the book, these two properties of democratic political system are seen. There is chaos, because there are no leaders to lead the boys on the island and a leader must be chosen, but there are two boys who want to lead the group of boys. In this chaos, Ralph immediately uses a democratic way and suggests having an election to choose the leader and every boy participates in this election and votes for a candidate.
“Apparently, a democracy is a place where numerous elections are held at great cost without issues and with interchangeable candidates.”(Gore Vidal)
This quotation of Gore Vidal supports my idea of elections and candidates in democracy. As Gore Vidal said, there are elections held in democracy and interchangeable candidates participate in these free and fair elections.
There are rules which everyone has to obey in democracy. These rules are established by the leader chosen by the citizens who participated in elections. There is order in democracy and everyone has the right to speak in society but of course not at the same time. Everyone opines their ideas in an order by taking speaking right.
“ ‘And another thing. We can’t have everybody talking at once. We’ll
have to have ‘Hands up’ like at school.’ / He held the conch before his face and glanced round the mouth. / ‘Then I’ll give him the conch.’ / ‘Conch?’ / ‘That’s what this shell’s called. I’ll give the conch to the next person to speak. He can hold it when he’s speaking.’ ” (Golding, 31)
We see a very strong sign of democracy in this quotation. This quotation has all the properties of the explanations made just before it. The leader of the group of boys is trying to establish a new rule that will help the boys to have an order in speaking and to give the speaking opportunity to all boys.
“Democracy means government by discussion, but it is not effective if you stop people talking.”(Clement Atlee)
Clement Atlee’s quotation is about people’s right of speaking opining their own opinions and expressing their own ideas on any topic. He says that democracy is based on discussions between the citizens and if the discussions are finished and the citizens are no more able to speak, democracy is also finished and it is no more able to run.
“ … He held the conch against his chest with one hand and stabbed the air with his index finger. / ‘Who thinks Ralph oughtn’t to be chief?’ / He looked expectantly at the boys ranged round, who had frozen. Under the palms there was deadly silence. / ‘Hands up,’ said Jack strongly, ‘whoever wants Ralph not to be chief?’ ” (Golding, 139)
Here we see a kind of election again. Jack doesn’t want Ralph to be chief anymore, thus he uses an election to reelect the leader. He doesn’t use violence or fear to reelect the leader; he uses a democratic way and tries to reelect the leader by the votes of the boys on the island. This is also a sign of democracy on the island, because elections form the basis of democracy.
… “I’m going off by myself. He can catch his own pigs. Anyone who wants to hunt when I do can come too.” (Golding 140)
In democracy, everyone has the right to have ideas that are different from the others’ ideas and everyone can form a new group that supports a particular idea. William Golding used this property of democracy in his novel. Jack doesn’t support the idea that Ralph supports and he leaves the group which is leaded by Ralph and he forms his own group and invites the others to this group. He doesn’t use a violent way or fear; he tells the others that they can go with him and lets the others to decide about going with him or staying with Ralph. This also a part of democracy, fear is never used and everyone decides about their own life.
The system in William Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” is democratic political system. William Golding uses elections, new group and rule ideas made by the characters in many parts of his book and that makes his book a symbol democratic political system. Don’t all this signs show that “Lord of the Flies” is a roman that has a democratic political system?
- Golding, William. (1988). Lord of the Flies. New York
- January 21, 2004. What is Democracy?. Retrieved from http://www.stanford.edu/~ldiamond/iraq/WhaIsDemocracy012004.htm
- Democracy Quotes. Retrieved from http://www.wisdomquotes.com/cat_democracy.html