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In Chapter 7, the boys are exploring the island in an attempt to find the beast. Before they are about to climb the mountain, Ralph suggests that someone return to the base camp to inform Piggy where the group is located. Fortunately, Simon volunteers to travel through the forest alone to give the message to Piggy. After Simon leaves, Jack becomes furious as Ralph begins to ask him questions regarding the pig-run. Jack's responses are short, and Ralph can sense the rising antagonism. Ralph then mentions that he is concerned about whether there will be enough light for them to travel safely through the forest. Jack dismisses Ralph's concern by saying, "I don't mind going...I'll go when we get there. Won't you? Would you rather go back to the shelters and tell Piggy?" (Golding 170). Ralph realizes that Jack is attempting to make him look weak and simply asks Jack, "Why do you hate me?" (Golding 170). The rest of the boys become silent as if "something indecent had been said." Ralph then turns around and leads the boys up the mountain.
When Ralph manages to hit the boar he gets caught up in Jack's world. This shows us that although Ralph and Jack are opposites, Ralph is, as we all are, susceptible to the wildness that dictates Jack.
At one point in chapter Seven, Ralph asks Jack about the pig-run he has found. Ralph wants to know if Jack knows where it leads to and he wants the boys to follow it in search of the beast. This starts a conflict between Jack and Ralph and foreshadows the much bigger conflict which arises in the following chapters.
After fighting over leadership and having Jack make fun of him the way he makes fun of Piggy, Ralph finally asks Jack, "Why do you hate me?" Jack doesn't answer and Ralph turns away. Ralph is showing his inexperience at leadership. He has been able to observe Jack for sometime now and should already know that Jack hates him because Ralph is the major impediment to Jack being able to take total control of the boys. By asking the question, Ralph puts Jack on the alert that he knows he is in conflict with Jack. Jack will no longer have to hide his animosity and can attack Ralph's leadership directly.
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