If Simon is a Christ figure, why might this be important to our understanding of the novel?i have to write an essay on this and this the second part of the prompt. i have written about a third of...

If Simon is a Christ figure, why might this be important to our understanding of the novel?

i have to write an essay on this and this the second part of the prompt. i have written about a third of it an am stuck on this part.

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Simon's portrayal as a Christ figure is significant to the novel when held up against Golding's other themes of decay and man's innate capacity for evil.  As Golding uses the boys on the island to  suggest that man has a natural, innate sense of evil, the author also provides a foil to the darkness in his character Simon.  Simon, who seems impervious to the temptation of savagery in the wilderness (like Christ), provides a much needed contrast to the experiences of characters like Jack, Roger, and even Ralph who is tempted to let go of civilization and the idea of rescue in lieu of the ease of being savage, partaking in the hunt, and dancing by the fire. 

Golding uses Simon, who despite his physical weakness, shows compassion, understanding, and insight into the true nature of the beast, as a symbol of hope on the island, like a light in the darkness for the other struggling characters such as Ralph and Piggy.  As important as Simon is as a symbol of hope and compassion, his death is even more significant.  Golding created this remarkable character so he could kill him--in a savage brutal way and by his peers--which effectively snuffs out hope and light on the island.  Simon's death, and Golding's careful portrayal of Simon as a Christ-figure, has an enormous impact on the other characters on the island, signalling the beginning of the end of civilization and emphasizing with brutal clarity the danger and evil within the island.

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