In chapters 3 and 4 of "Lord of the Flies", what are the relationships between Simon and Piggy, Jack, and Ralph?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In chapter 3, the relationship between Ralph and Jack becomes increasingly strained, as Jack refuses to help Ralph and Simon build the huts on the beach. Ralph is upset that Jack and the other boys prefer to hunt instead of helping build necessary shelters. However, Jack disagrees with Ralph's assessment and argues that the boys want meat. Tensions rise as Ralph and Jack begin yelling at each other before they attempt to make up and go swimming in the pool together. Simon does not participate in the argument between the two boys and goes off into the forest alone. Simon is a rather reclusive, enigmatic boy, who prefers to be alone and does not attract much attention from the boys. Ralph appreciates his help, and Jack does not view him as a threat.

In chapter 4, the tension between the boys continues to rise after Jack convinces Samneric to leave the signal fire unattended and the boys miss out on an opportunity to be rescued when a ship passes the island. When Jack returns from a successful hunt, Ralph accosts him for allowing the signal fire to go out. Piggy intervenes and begins to criticize Jack and the hunters for acting immaturely. Jack slaps Piggy and ends up breaking one of the lenses in his glasses. Ralph then intervenes and continues to argue with Jack about being irresponsible. That night, the feelings of resentment are evident as the boys feast on the pig. Ralph announces that he will be holding an assembly the next day. By the end of chapter 4, Ralph is done dealing with Jack, and the two cannot agree on anything. Jack develops strong feelings of hate towards Piggy because he supports Ralph's decisions and Simon is relatively an afterthought because of his reclusive nature.

luannw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The relationship between Jack and Ralph is getting strained in chapter 3 and the lack of, as well as the need for, organization is evident.  Jack wants to spend his time hunting and being the savage.  Ralph wants to spend his time building shelter and trying to make their lives as civilized as possible.  They are at odds with one another. At one point in the chapter, the two argue over which is more important - food or shelter.   After some shouting between each other, the narration tells us, "They looked at each other, baffled, in love and hate." There is still enough civility between them to recognize each other as boys from the same background, but there is enough difference that soon that recognition will be gone. Piggy, the intellect of the group, sees the need for shelter and organization as well as the need for food, he also understands the necessity of maintaining the signal fire, which Jack allowed to go out and he berates Jack for that.  That causes Jack to lash out at him.  Jack hates Piggy because Piggy represents reason and intellect, neither of which Jack wants in his savage state of mind.  Simon grows as the mystic of the group in these two chapters.  He is a curiosity to all of the others because he doesn't seem to lean in either Jack's or Ralph's direction.  At the end of ch. 3, he goes off by himself for the first time to think.

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Lord of the Flies

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