What is the "scar" on the island in Lord of the Flies?

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Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The boys' crash-landing left a "long scar smashed into the jungle" (7).  Golding uses the imagery of the scar, a flesh wound, as a symbol for the destructive nature of humanity.  Ralph and Piggy immediately notice the damage to the island where the wreckage of the plane left broken trees.  Ralph "touched a jagged end of a trunk" and wondered aloud to Piggy what happened to the fuselage of the plane.  Piggy's reply conjures more imagery of the plane's destructive path carved onto the island:

"That storm dragged it out to sea.  It wasn't half dangerous with all them tree trunks falling..." (8).

Golding's imagery of the scar warns of man's innate capability to destroy; the scar is a visual symbol that foreshadows deeper themes within the novel.

brittneyalvarez | Student

The scar represents the evil of humanity. Remember it was the evil of man that put them on the island in the first place. Their plane was shot down by the enemy during this war. The scar on the island is suppose to be a reminder of the evil of man. Considering what the boys or "savages" do at the end of the novel, I think Golding made his point on the evil of man quite clear. The boys in this novel are no older than 12. Yet they murder two people on the island, and without any guilt. 

nicole6643 | Student

The boys leave the scar on the island from the moment of their arrival, as their plane crashes through the forest. a scar is a healed wound. it suggesta that man's presense will always be felt long after they leave the island. it is also the first thing of disruction the boys do to thier paradise.

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Lord of the Flies

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