How does Ralph begin to reveal signs of savagery?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Throughout the majority of the novel, Ralph is a proponent for civility and views the savages with contempt. After the boys agree to hunt the beast, Ralph joins the hunters as they explore the island. In Chapter 7, Ralph takes part in a hunt and becomes excited after he hits the nose of a boar with his spear. Although Ralph only injures the animal, he is extremely proud of his accomplishment. Golding writes,

"He sunned himself in their new respect and felt that hunting was good after all" (162).

When Ralph begins to reenact the hunt, Robert plays the role of the pig and all of the hunters begin poking him. Ralph gets carried away by the excitement and starts jabbing Robert using Eric's spear. As the hunters begin to chant "Kill the pig! Cut his throat! Kill the pig! Bash him in!" Ralph attempts to harm Robert (Golding 164). Golding writes,

"The desire to squeeze and hurt was over-mastering" (Golding 164).

Ralph's behavior depicts his primitive instinct to act like a savage. Later on in the novel, Ralph continues to reveal signs of savagery by beginning to forget the significance of maintaining a signal fire and participating in the murder of Simon.

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Lord of the Flies

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