Explain the symbolism in the description of Simon's body going out to sea in Lord of the Flies

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teachersyl | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

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The passage where Simon's body is swept away by the sea describes nature in brilliant detail. There is discussion of the sun and the moon, the sand and the water. This beautiful scenery belies the rage and violence the boys have learned and executed there. There is also an allusion to the supernatural. The moonlight makes Simon glow: "The line of his cheek silvered and the turn of his shoulder became sculptured marble." (Golding, chapter 9) Also, it characterizes the moonlight as creatures that seem to gather around Simon and carry him into the water. Nature is, literally and figuratively, receiving Simon to herself.

The fact that the other boys are afforded a chance to remain innocent by not having to deal with the harsh reality of burying a peer is important to the remainder of the novel. They cannot face their actions just yet, or they will break down as a society entirely.

 

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