What are the attitudes Ralph, Jack, Piggy, and Simon have towards the "beast" and what attitudes to life as a whole do they imply?
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Ralph, reflecting the attitudes of the son of a military man, is reluctant to believe in "the beast". He believes the idea of the beast is just a distraction and they must concentrate on more important things, like the condition of the huts and lack of fresh water. His focus and attitudes are practical, based on setting up a well running society. Jack, on the other hand, doesn't really believe in the beast but is willing to use it's possible existence as a source of power over the littleuns. He criticizes the littleuns for believing in the beast, but in doing so, puts the fear of the beast in their minds. True to his nature, Piggy tries to explain logically why the beast cannot exist. But when he tries to get the littleuns to express their fears openly, chaos follows. Simon, who is doesn't believe in the beast either allows his fear of speaking to the rest of the boys result in his humiliation. When Ralph admonishes him for moving around at night, this allows Jack to humiliate Simon by associating Simon with "loose bowels". This shows that Jack is opportunistic and cruel, and that Simon is thoughtful but shy. Thus the "beast" helps show the true personalities of the boys.
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