Lord of the Flies by William Golding

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What is an example man versus man conflict in chapter 9 of Lord of the Flies?

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Adam Worcester eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The primary example of man versus man conflict in chapter nine is the power struggle between Ralph and Jack. Jack and his band of hunters have killed a pig and are cooking it at the opposite end of the island from the others. Ralph and Piggy, left alone at the camp, eventually join them. They are given some of the meat, but after dinner, Jack announces he is forming a new tribe, openly contradicting Ralph's authority as chief.

Trouble had been simmering for a while between the two boys. Ralph, the elected chief, emphasizes the importance of keeping a signal fire lit so that a boat could potentially spot it and rescue them. Jack was focused on finding food, constantly hunting the wild boars that roam the island. The scene in this chapter foreshadows the end of the novel, when the conflict between the two erupts into violence.

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Gretchen Mussey eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The primary Man vs. Man conflict that takes place in chapter 9 involves Ralph and Jack's confrontation over who should be in charge. After Ralph and Piggy partake in the hunters' feast, Jack makes an announcement by asking who will join his tribe. Ralph, who refuses to sit down and obey Jack, reminds him that he is the elected chief. However, Jack dismisses Ralph's comments and tells the group that he not only gave them food but is also protecting them from the beast. Ralph aggressively responds to Jack by reminding him that he placed Jack in charge of the hunters and brings up the absent signal fire. When Ralph threatens to blow the conch, Jack replies that they will not obey it because it does not count on their side of the island. Suddenly, lightning strikes and the thunderstorm intensifies, which prompts Jack to lead a frenzied dance on the beach. Tragically, Ralph loses the confrontation, and Jack remains the leading voice on the island. To make the situation worse, Ralph and Piggy participate in Jack's dance and proceed to brutally murder Simon during the frenzy.

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poetrymfa eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In Chapter Nine of Lord of the Flies, there are two primary incidences of man versus man conflict.

First, Jack has declared himself the ruler of a new tribe, one that centers around violent bloodlust and the act of hunting. Hungry and scared, many of the boys abandon Ralph's leadership and join Jack's tribe. Thus, a man versus man conflict of leadership occurs between Jack, who has turned into a terrifying tyrant, and Ralph, who wants to maintain the carefully structured democracy. 

Second, Simon has made the shocking discovery that the "beast" is really just the silhouette of the dead airmen, whose parachute lines were tangled on a group of rocks. Simon realizes that the antagonist that legitimized Jack's leadership is not real; when he goes to deliver this news to the boys, he is slaughtered in their crazed frenzy. Although the boys have mistaken Simon for the beast, they are still destroying another human being in a case of man versus man conflict. 

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mitchrich4199 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In Chapter 9, Jack has become a self-selected king, while Ralph is trying to live on the island with some sort of dignity and righteousness. That is the main conflict of the story. However, Simon brings the conflict to a head, as he comes to the boys with information that the beast isn't real and that it is a dead pilot on top of the hill. He has the answer that should help the boys come back to a state of normalcy, but he doesn't have time to tell them because they kill him, thinking he is the beast.


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