What is the importance of the sacrifice of Simon to the novel?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In the consideration of William Golding's novel, Lord of the Flies, as an allegory which points to the inherent evil in man, the characters are symbolic representations of qualities.  For instance, in the main conflict of civilization with savagery, Ralph symbolizes order and Jack savage anarchy. 

Simon is the character who represents spirituality and goodness.  His brutal death signals the strength of the savage nature. For, with Simon's death goes the truth about the boys, the truth that the savage lies within them.  Simon, who has seen the devil and talked with him, represents hope and civilization.  But, with his cruel death, the savagery on the island becomes more prominent, indicating Golding's theme that the basic instinct of savagery is even more primal than any other urge.  In fact, it is essential to the human psyche. But, it must be recognized and controlled. When Simon does die, his death is symbolic as the end of order and civilization.




killing of the truth

moral degeneracy


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