What is the importance and meaning of Simon's conversation with the pig's head/beast in "Gift for the Darkness"?Fromabout two thirds into the chapter from the line 'Simon stayed where he was' to...

What is the importance and meaning of Simon's conversation with the pig's head/beast in "Gift for the Darkness"?

Fromabout two thirds into the chapter from the line 'Simon stayed where he was' to 'In Simon;s right temple a pulse began to beat the brain' and then at the end of the chapter from 'you silly little boy said the LOTF' to the last sentence of the chapter. Can someone explain the importance and meanings of these sections please?

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luannw | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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Simon's trance and conversation with the Lord of the Flies is the theme of the book - that the evil in the world lies within the heart of mankind, not from without.  As early as chapter 5, Simon has a basic understanding, not yet fully realized by him, that the source of evil on the island is not a beast or anything that isn't human.  As the chapters progress then to chapter 8, "A Gift for the Darkness", this understanding becomes clearer to Simon.  By the time Simon has this conversation with the head of the pig, the self-proclaimed "Lord of the Flies", Simon knows absolutely where the source of evil is.  That is why he isn't afraid to explore and check out for himself the dead parachutist and that is why he tries to tell the others what he knows but is killed before he can do so.  The Lord of the Flies told him that darkness was in the hearts of the others on the island and that should have been a warning to Simon that the darkness itself would prevent Simon from sharing that information.  At this point in the story, the evil (darkness) is stronger than the goodness and the rules of civilization that had kept the evil at bay previously.

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