Two separate illustrations of an animal head and a fire on a mountain

Lord of the Flies

by William Golding

Start Free Trial

How does the island setting in Lord of the Flies relate to the theme of man's innate savagery?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

*The original questions have been edited down to a single question (per eNotes policy).

The island setting and the emergence of man's innate savagery are deeply connected in William Golding's novel Lord of the Flies.  Golding uses the setting of the island to isolate the boys from the world of civilization and adults.  Their isolation forces them into circumstances to which they would normally never be exposed. 

For example, the boys' collective starvation drives Jack's foray into hunting; he learns to adapt to the landscape in order to track and hunt the pigs.  When Jack uses the paint the first time to make "a mask that drew their eyes and appalled them.  He began to dance and his laughter became a bloodthirsty snarling" (64).  The boys' experiences on the island, isolated from the world, make them lose their inhibitions, thus bringing our their inner savagery. 

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial