What is one important quote from the scene in Lord of the Flies when Ralph becomes chief?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"Let him be the chief with the trumpet-thing." (Golding 22)

In the first chapter of the novel Lord of the Flies, Piggy and Ralph discover a conch shell. Ralph blows the conch and assembles the group of lost boys on the island. During their first meeting, the boys discuss the need for a chief and Jack quickly claims that he should be chief. Roger mentions that they should vote for their chief. Ralph is sitting patiently with the conch on his knees when the boys point towards him to elect him chief. Golding mentions that the conch had a powerful attractiveness to it that aided in Ralph's election as chief. Throughout the novel, the conch represents civilization, democracy, and order. The "trumpet-thing" in the quote above refers to the conch that is sitting on Ralph's leg. The fact that the boys took a special interest in it suggests their desire to remain civilized. Throughout the novel, Ralph uses the conch to assemble the boys and signify whose turn it is to talk. Later on, the boys refuse to acknowledge the conch as they slip further into barbarism, and Ralph loses his position as chief.

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Lord of the Flies

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