Sunday, January 12, 2020

Compare the Characters of Ralph and Jack. Essay

How does Golding influence the reader’s responses to his characters? In the beginning of Lord of the Flies, Ralph is aware of the fact that he is on a deserted island, but is in a sort of daydream. He’s very rude and immature towards Piggy and acts awkwardly towards Piggy, as if there was no one else on the island. â€Å"This is an island. At least I think it’s an island.† The author tells in that line that Ralph is possibly in a daydream and can’t tell fantasy from reality. When it is only Ralph and Piggy at the start, he is rather lazy, sleepy and quick tempered, but not the least bit worried about being abandoned on an unknown island. â€Å"Now the shell was no longer a thing seen but not to be touched.† Ralph discovers the conch, which’s something that interests him but doesn’t know what it is so he turns to Piggy for knowledge. Ralph realizes that the conch is something valuable just by looking at it, but doesn’t know that it is very significant and would become the symbol of his future leadership. â€Å"The creature was a party of boys marching approximately in step in two parallel lines and dressed in strangely eccentric clothes.† The author places the reader in Ralph’s body so that they see everything he seeing. This gives us an insight into Ralph’s mind, which influence our views about him. Jack appears wearing a ‘cap badge’ and a cloak, which tells the reader that Jack has some type of hierarchy, he is the one leading the choir and they all seem to obey him. The author description of Jack is very unappealing and devilish, and through the description of his eyes we can work out that he probably very short tempered. As soon as he meets Piggy he starts bullying him and putting him down, as if he’s already organized in his mind who should speak and who shouldn’t. â€Å"He’s not fatty,’ cried Ralph, â€Å"his real name’s Piggy.† Ralph defends Piggy because he feels sorry for him, but makes the situation worse by being careless and breaking his promise. Ralph suggests that the children should have a chief because he wants to bring law order to the island. When they are voting for a leader Jack exclaims that he should be chief as if it were a natural thought for him because he comes from a private school, where as Ralph is middle classed, therefore he probably attended a grammar school education. Ralph wins the election, although the choir votes for Jack unhappily, because of his leadership characteristics and mainly due to the blowing of the conch. â€Å"The choir belongs to you of course.† Ralph tries to make peace with Jack after the voting and reminds him that he still in charge of the choir, and this shows that he has got natural leadership qualities although he doesn’t know how lead yet. Jack meets his first hurdle in becoming a savage when he has to cut the throat of a pig but his ideas of civilization prevents him from doing so. Jack has still has sanity in the beginning and agrees with the making of rules, but doesn’t intend to keep them because he wants to punish people and have fun by destroying things in the process. The author introduces the idea of there being a snake on the island, which the little children observe at night, which is slightly in contrast to the Garden of Eden where a snake is the symbol of evil. â€Å"There isn’t a snake thing. But if there was a snake we’d hunt it and kill it.† The author doesn’t actually let us see into Jack’s mind but from the outside we know that he is very cunning and clever, by turning situations to his advantage. He tries to get power by offering protection to the little children and increasing their confidence in him, so that they would support him and not Ralph. â€Å"The conch doesn’t count on top the mountain.† Here Jack is undermining the conch and its importance to annoy and re-establish his assumed superiority over Piggy. Also this way he is attacking Ralph at the same time, because the conch is the main reason why Ralph gets elected. Jack wants everyone else to obey the rules, but doesn’t keep to them and therefore is very hypocritical about what he says and does. He knows the smaller children want to have fun and uses that to his advantage by fooling around and bullying Piggy. The author describes Jack as a sprinter and gives him the characteristics of native hunter when he is in the forest, and gives him animal forms turning from ‘dog-like’ to ‘ape-like’, which gives the reader the impression that Jack is animal and no longer a human. When Jack goes after the pigs you can tell that he is more determined than ever because the author puts in ‘the promise of meat’, which tells the reader that he has gained the hunter’s instinct. When Ralph and Jack interact again they almost get into an argument, but then they talk about the â€Å"little’uns† and open up their feelings to each other and end up agreeing on the construction of the shelters, although Jack is thinking about killing a pig first and not on being rescued, while talking. â€Å"He looked in astonishment, no longer at himself but at an awesome stranger.† Jack paints his face, gets some leaves for his new mask, because he wants to look like savage and the twins, Bill and Roger become frightened of him so he gains a certain control over them. Some of the older boys now enjoy hunting, killing pigs for their meat and boasting about how they participated. The author is making Jack the snake and its like he’s luring them to eat the forbidden fruit, which means there also turning into savages as well. Ralph starts to protect Piggy, this is due to the fact Jack inflicted bodily harm on Piggy. He starts to side with Piggy even when Jack apologized, because he knows that Piggy is being victimized too much. He realizes the importance of Piggy’s brains and has support him to maintain authority. â€Å"Jack, Simon, Maurice, most of the hunters, on Ralph’s right; the rest on the left.† The group has basically separated into two groups, Jack and his loyal hunters and Piggy and the little’uns. This is a very important incident as Jack can now put down Ralph’s authority because he has the backing of half the group. Ralph boosts his authority by giving orders to everyone and starts to plan a decent environment to live in, but Jack is still stirring up trouble. The author has been clever about creating intensity because he has brought in two different characters, which are complete opposites of each other. On coming on the island, Jack already leads the choir, wants to be chief and doesn’t get elected, while on the other hand Ralph doesn’t know anyone, has no wish to be leader but becomes leader and has to mould into the role of being a leader. The author also shows how Jack changes from being civilized to turning into a primitive savage and how other boys follow him. Ralph learns a lot from his mistakes and adjusts so that he can uphold his position. The author also lets us see Ralph innermost thought so we know what type of person he is, but we only get to view Jack from the outside, which influences are sympathy towards Ralph. He also introduces the ‘snake-thing’, which is linked to the Garden of Eden and always gives the reader a sense of evil. The first five chapters are in complete contrast to the book Coral Island, which is a book about children who help each other out, when they are left on a desert island.

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