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

Lord of the Flies

by William Golding

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Why is Simon considered a Christ figure in Lord of the Flies?

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Simon a Christlike figure in Lord of the Flies for several reasons. Like Christ, Simon's goal is to help others, serving their needs in tangible ways. He is also misunderstood and ostracized from their little society. Simon is tempted by the Lord of the Flies, representing evil, much as Christ is tempted by Satan in the Gospels. Finally, Simon is sacrificed, though he is completely innocent.

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A Christlike character in literature is one who embodies many of the qualities of Jesus Christ, found in the New Testament of the Bible. Jesus Christ was hated by many, though He inflicted harm on no one. His teachings sought to promote goodness, yet He was and is still opposed by those whose plans are evil. Simon is often characterized as a Christlike character for the following reasons.

Simon's goal is to help others. Simon doesn't become involved in the plans of evil, maintaining a peace with Jack's group while also distancing himself from them. Instead, Simon focuses on others. When the littluns can't get their own fruit, Simon picks it for them. When Piggy is bullied, Simon supports him. When Ralph needs help constructing shelter to protect everyone, Simon assists him. When Ralph and Jack fight about Jack's lack of help with the shelters, Ralph points out Simon's service:

"People don't help much."

He wanted to explain how people were never quite what you thought they were.

"Simon. He helps." He pointed at the shelters.

"All the rest rushed off. He's done as much as I have. Only—"

"Simon's always about."

When people need him, Simon can be counted on to serve their needs.

Simon is misunderstood. Because he doesn't become involved with the fights of the group and instead removes himself from conflict, Simon is misunderstood and even scorned on the island. Once when Ralph notices that Simon is missing from the shelter area, he tells Jack, "He's queer. He's funny," and Jack nods in agreement. When Simon attempts to convey to the boys that their own evil nature is the real beast that should be feared, they ridicule him:

The hunters were screaming with delight.
Simon's effort fell about him in ruins; the laughter beat him cruelly and he shrank away defenseless to his seat.

For all his kindness, Simon never finds a real sense of acceptance within the group. Instead, the group often ridicules him for his insight and demeanor, ostracizing him because of his goodness.

Simon is tempted. Christ was tempted by Satan, which is described in the Gospels. After being baptized, Christ went to the desert to fast for forty days and nights. During this time, Satan tempted Him to prove Himself, offering him all the kingdoms of the world if He would submit to Satan's authority. Christ refused. Simon also finds himself being tempted by evil. The Lord of the Flies taunts Simon:

“This has gone quite far enough. My poor, misguided child, do you think you know better than I do?”

There was a pause.

“I’m warning you. I’m going to get angry. D’you see? You’re not wanted. Understand? We are going to have fun on this island. Understand? We are going to have fun on this island! So don’t try it on, my poor misguided boy, or else—”

Simon confronts evil and holds firm in his own sense of goodness.

Simon is also ultimately sacrificed, though he is completely innocent. The boys see him as a "beast," and they kill him because they are unable to see the truth.

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Simon is a Christ Figure for many reasons:

Compassion for others - Just as Christ showed compassion for others in his healing of the sick and feeding of the hungry, Simon shows compassion in the way he stands up for Piggy when Jack criticizes him (ch. 2), helps Ralph with building the huts after others have abandoned the work (ch. 3), and helps the littluns get food that is out of their reach.  This last act is seen in chapter 3:

Then, amid the roar of bees in the afternoon sunlight, Simon found for them the fruit they could not reach, pulled off the choicest from up in the foliage, passed them back down to the endless, outstretched hands. 

Quiet time alone - Just as Christ often leaves his disciples for short periods of time so he can be alone to pray, Simon leaves the others so he can go to his "quiet place" for time alone.  Golding describes Simon's "oasis" at the end of chapter 3:

When he was secure in the middle he was in a little cabin screened off from the open space by a few leaves. He squatted down, parted the leaves and looked out into the clearing. Nothing moved but a pair of gaudy butterflies that danced round each other in the hot air. 

Spiritual Insight - Just as Christ showed great spiritual insight and shared these insights through his teachings, Simon also has a strong spiritual sense of what is true and right.  He shows this in chapter 3 after Ralph raises the concern to Jack that the littluns are afraid:

(Ralph): “They talk and scream. The littluns. Even some of the others. As if—”
(Simon): “As if it wasn’t a good island.”
Astonished at the interruption, (Jack and Ralph) looked up at Simon’s serious face.
“As if,” said Simon, “the beastie, the beastie or the snake-thing, was real. Remember?”

Additionally it is Simon who later states, when the older boys debate whether there is a beast, "Maybe it's only us" (ch. 5).  When the other boys ridicule him, Simon becomes "inarticulate in his effort to express mankind’s essential illness," finally saying:

“What’s the dirtiest thing there is?”
As an answer Jack dropped into the uncomprehending silence that followed it the one crude expressive syllable....
Simon’s effort fell about him in ruins; the laughter beat him cruelly ...

Criticized and mistreated by others - The above quote also shows how Simon is ridiculed - something Christ experienced many times throughout his life.  Even Piggy calls Simon "cracked" (ch. 8).

Temptation in the wilderness - Just as Christ is tempted by Satan when he goes into the desert for 40 days, Simon is tempted by the "Lord of the Flies" (aka. Beelzebub, or Satan) in his conversation with the pig's head in ch. 8.  The head urges him:

“Well then ... you’d better run off and play with the others. They think you’re batty. You don’t want Ralph to think you’re batty, do you?... Aren’t you afraid of me?... There isn’t anyone to help you. Only me. And I’m the Beast.”

Mission to bring the truth - After this confrontation, Simon sets out to learn the truth.  He climbs the mountain, discovers the "beast" is only a dead parachutist, sets him free, then goes to carry this message to the others, just as Christ sought to bring his message of truth to his followers.

Persecuted unto death - Just as Christ was killed on the cross after the angry mob shouted for the Romans to "crucify him!", Simon is killed on the beach by the other boys.  Unlike Christ, however, there is no resurrection for Simon.

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What is the significance of Simon's death in Lord of the Flies?

The significance of Simon’s death in Lord of the Flies relates to the fact that the one truly good, truly rational person on the island is now dead. The person who took care of the younger children and who realized that there was no “beast” to worry about on the island is no more.

With his passing, the last vestige of hope that the boys will live a civilized, harmonious life disappears. The fact that even Ralph and Piggy, who have thus far been portrayed as largely good people, participate in Simon’s murder shows that hope has truly died with Simon.

Simon’s death also signifies the complete departure from logic that has taken place on the island. Many of the boys have been living in fear of the mysterious “beastie” that they think lives on the island. When Simon arrives to tell them that he has concrete proof that this beast does not exist, they murder him rather than hearing him out. It turns out that the only beast that was ever on the island exists in the hearts and minds of a group of frenzied boys who believe in murdering first and asking questions later.

Simon is often likened to a Christ figure, albeit one not capable of resurrection, and his death symbolizes the end of everything good.

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What is the significance of Simon's death in Lord of the Flies?

Simon represents an innate goodness, and his actions are consistently benevolent. He does not participate in the bloodthirsty hunts which drive Jack's group. He takes care of the needs of the youngest kids, giving the "choicest" fruit to them and comforting them at night. When the rest of the group is terrified of the "beast" on the island, it is Simon who points out that "maybe it's only us," demonstrating his knowledge of the evil tendencies that reside within all of mankind. As the other boys shed the conditioning of society, becoming increasingly savage the longer they remain on the island, Simon becomes more reflective, spending time alone and in the midst of nature. Despite his integrity, the rest of the group murders Simon, which demonstrates the overpowering abilities of evil when goodness is scarce.

Simon's death is also a turning point in the characterization of Piggy and Ralph. Until this point, they have removed themselves from the hunters' plans, standing as a sort of antithesis to Jack's savagery. Yet it is important to note that in this scene, Piggy and Ralph participate, albeit indirectly, in Simon's murder. As Simon stumbles out of the forest, Piggy and Ralph are as equally blinded as the rest of the group to the truth, recognizing Simon as a "beast" and doing nothing to save him. They regret this later, but in that moment, they prove to be as savage as the rest of the boys, which demonstrates the power of a mob-like group mentality.

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What is the significance of Simon's death in Lord of the Flies?

In chapter 9, a tropical storm rages over the island, and Jack and his hunters engage in their ritual dance as heavy rains bombard the beach. During the chaotic atmosphere, Simon emerges from the forest, and the boys mistake him for the beast. Every boy, including Ralph, Piggy, and Samneric, join in the ritual frenzy and brutally murder Simon. This significant moment signifies the complete loss of innocence on the island and emphasizes the barbarity of the boys.

Simon is a symbolic Christ figure throughout the novel, and his death reflects Christ's brutal crucifixion. The fact that the boys have committed such an atrocious, brutal act signifies their complete descent into savagery. Essentially, Simon's death represents the loss of civility on the island and the point of no return. After Simon dies, there is no hope for the few boys who cling to the idea of creating a civilized society on the island. 

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What is the significance of Simon's death in Lord of the Flies?

This chapter symbolises the end of any vestiges of civilisation on the island and in the community of the boys. At this stage Jack and his hunters are nothing but inhuman savages filled with bloodlust and able to commit heinous crimes with a clear conscience. Ralph's followers at this stage become depressed and consider joining Jack and his gang, and all are involved in the ritual dance around the fire following the murder. In a highly significant piece of pathetic fallacy, the storm that rages over the island after Simon's death symbolises the chaos and anarchy that have overtaken the island and the boys and also reminds us of the catastrophe of the murder and what it represents.

In a sense, after Simon's confrontation with the Lord of the Flies, where the Lord of the Flies promises that he will have some "fun" with Simon and Simon realises that the beast is actually within us all, it was clear that Simon would need to confront the beast in the other boys. The Christ-like parallels between Simon and Jesus are maintained here (though not completely), for Jesus and Simon are both killed for the truth they possess. However, unlike Christ, Simon is not given a chance to share his truth. Also, of course, the function of the deaths are very different: Jesus died to save mankind, whereas Simon's death only serves to highlight the moral degeneracy at the heart of man and ushers in even further oppression and darkness in the novel.

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In Lord of the Flies, what is the significance of Simon's special place?

In Lord of the Flies, Simon is not like the other boys. He is very helpful and kind and is the one who helps Ralph build the shelters. He finds the growing conflict between Ralph and Jack to be unsettling and likes to have time alone. He does not have any fear of the darkness and so has to admit that he is the one roaming around at night in the dark because some of the "littluns" are convinced that a "beastie" is lurking.

After the signal fire goes out and Ralph and Jack have been arguing, Simon looks "from Ralph to Jack... and what he saw seemed to make him afraid." Simon is very perceptive and aware that the growing tension is more about the boys' relationships and struggles than it is about a beast. He is able to collect his thoughts when he is alone. Simon is in this special place when he hallucinates, thinking that the pig's head on a stick represents the beast speaking to him when it says "Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill! ... You knew, didn't you? I'm part of you?" He has realized why the boys are so afraid and why they think they have seen the beast and he wants to tell them about the dead parachutist. 

Simon's special place is therefore significant because it helps Simon understand his surroundings but it is also the place where Jack killed the pig and left the "Gift for the Darkness." It therefore helps the reader prepare for what will follow when Simon tries to share the information with the boys and is killed for his trouble, mistaken for the beast. This is ironic and confirms that, despite the best efforts of some of the boys, they cannot defeat the savage within Jack and his hunters. 

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What does Simon symbolize in Lord Of The Flies?

Simon symbolizes goodness. He is a gentle-hearted person. He takes the time to feed the littluns. He symbolizes the Christ figure in his goodness. The small children cannot reach the fruit as well as Simon. Simon takes the time to pick the fruit for the littluns:

He kindly helps the younger boys get fruit.

Simon also is supportive of Ralph. He helps Ralph build the shelters when many of the boys would not contribute their time. Also, Simon meditates. He has his own special place on the island where he spends much of his time alone, meditating. He is intuitive by nature. He is the first to realize that the beast is a dead parachutist hanging from a tree. He also realizes that the beast is within man. Earlier, he tried to convey that to the boys but no would listen to him. He represents a Christ-like image in which no one will listen as he tries to share his goodness:

Simon tries to suggest that the only beast on the island is in themselves; however, no one listens.

Later, he has an encounter with the pig's head and realizes that the beast lives within the boys:

The most intuitive of all, he is the first to realize through a vision that the beast is “human at once heroic and sick.”

Rushing to share what he has learned with the boys, he comes out of the forest to meet a angry mob of boys caught up in a hunting dance frenzy. The boys attack Simon and kill him with their bare hands and teeth:

At the height of the party, a storm breaks and Simon arrives to tell them that there is no beast. In a frenzy, they kill Simon.

Simon's death is as a sacrificial death, much like the Christ-like scene before the actual Crucifixion. Simon represents a Christ-like figure. He is a picture of gentle goodness. He is reflective and intuitive. He dies an awful death and his body returns to the sea. His death makes Ralph more aware of the dangers that exist within Jack and his hunters. His death opens Ralph's eyes.

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Discuss the importance of Simon's clearing in the novel Lord of the Flies.

Simon is the most sensitive, benevolent boy on the island and is the novel's symbolic Christ-figure. Simon is inherently peaceful and has an affinity for nature. He is also considered an outcast and spends most of his time relaxing by himself in his secluded spot in the forest. Simon's secluded spot in the forest is a tranquil location, where butterflies dance among the forest leaves as the sun shines through the thick canopy above. Simon's secluded spot in the forest allegorically represents Jesus's forty days in the wilderness, where he was tempted by the devil. Later in the novel, Jack and his hunters kill a sow and impale the pig's severed head on a stake in the middle of Simon's secluded spot. When Jack and his hunters leave, Simon hallucinates and has an enlightening conversation with the Lord of the Flies, which allegorically represents the devil. This meeting between Simon and the Lord of the Flies alludes to when Christ was tempted by the devil in the wilderness. Simon's affinity for nature and his time spent in the secluded spot in the forest further characterizes him as a symbol Christ-figure and enables Golding to allude to Christ's temptation in the wilderness.

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Discuss the importance of Simon's clearing in the novel Lord of the Flies.

Simon is the moral character in this novel.  He realizes what the boys do not.  He knows that the beast is within them.  The boys think it is an actual monster of some sort.  Because Simon has this ability to understand beyond what the others can, he is known as the Christ symbol.  He needs his place of peace.  This is where he is able to see the true beauty of the island.  He understands what is happening on the island, and this is his one place to get away from the others to see it all clearly.

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What is Simon's function in Lord of the Flies?

Simon is a sort of religious mystic, a prophet, and a figure for Christ in the novel. He is the only boy who realises, instinctively, that the beast is "only us", that it is the "darkness of man's heart" that the boys are afraid of and which constitutes the "beast". It is as he comes down the mountain to bring the good news to his friends that it is only the parachutist, and not the beast, on the hill, that he is killed by them.

Simon constantly has a close identification with nature, going to his special place, surrounded by candle buds, on a couple of occasions: and being unafraid to travel across the island alone to help Piggy with the littluns. Simon isn't afraid.

Even when everyone is frightened of the parachutist on the mountain, Simon volunteers to go up the mountain: "What else is there to do?" he asks.

Yet Simon's clearsightedness and insight is juxtaposed with his physical weakness, and epilepsy. He is always throwing faints, Jack tells us early on, and after his encounter - in his imagination - with the Lord of the Flies, he loses consciousness and falls into the imaginary mouth of the beast.

Simon has the insight, the fundamental understanding, that would save the boys on the island. Yet he never manages to communicate it.

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What does Simon represent in Lord of the Flies?

Simon is a character who is unlike any other characters in this allegorical novel. If Ralph stands for civilisation and Jack represents human savagery, Simon seems to represent some kind of mystical goodness that links humanity with nature. Whereas the other boys, even Ralph and Piggy at points, are quick to abandon morality very soon after ending up on the island with no adults to enforce it, Simon retains his morality and continues to act on his idea of what is good even without adults around to enforce this. He is the first character to realise that the beast actually is within the boys themselves:

What I mean is... maybe it's only us.

Simon therefore represents some kind of messiah-like figure whose essential goodness separates him from the other boys and likewise seems to point towards the real lack characters who are driven by morality alone. His death at the hands of the other boys cements his comparison to Jesus, suggesting that in the real world, as well as on this island, there are few people who are good instinctively rather than as a result of customs, culture and laws. The majority of humans, Golding thus argues, are just as savage as Jack at heart.

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What does Simon represent in Lord of the Flies?

Simon is often thought to be either the archetype of a Christ figure or to represent Christ. Whether you look at him as an archetype or symbol, they both perform the function of making the reader realize he was an answer, and a possible hope, but no one would listen to him. Because the people failed to hear his message, in their ignorance, they killed him. We see this Christ figure not only in Simon's death, but also in the way he lived his life. If you go back and reflect on some of Simon's actions recorded, you will see he was always noted as helpful and kind. He never sought a leadership role or attention. The character of Christ on earth was said to have a similar homely attitude. Simon helped build the structures and he offered to go back and watch the little ones when it was getting late.

His trek alone through the jungle (or garden) and his time with the Lord of the Flies (a direct reference to Satan) proves the Christ symbol even further. The bible presents that Christ's 3 day struggle after his death was with Satan, and Christ won. Simon faced the Lord of the Flies and conquered the fear of the boys as he also identified that there was no beast on the island, it was just the man in the parachute.

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What is the importance of the character Simon in Lord of the Flies? What quotes illustrate this?

Simon can be thought of as the moral compass among the boys, and to use the words of Yeats in "The Second Coming," the center that "cannot hold." Simon has the wisdom to understand that the evil on the island is not coming from an external and supernatural force; it is what is in the minds of the boys. Those who choose to follow Jack are subject to his threats, fear mongering, and encouragement of atavism.

Simon aligns himself with Piggy and Ralph because they are boys who hold onto the civility and logic that society has instilled in them. Simon, especially, understands that both their physical and spiritual survival depends on their investment in looking out for each other and not letting fear drive their behavior. In chapter three, Simon demonstrates the behavior that he knows is right:

Simon found for them the fruit they could not reach, pulled off the choicest from up in the foliage, passed them back down to the endless, outstretched hands.

In this gesture of feeding the multitudes, Simon embodies Christian teachings of caring for others, and at the same time, offering sustenance.

The fact that Simon is murdered by the frenzied actions of the others emphasizes Golding's idea that, left to its own devices and in the hands of corrupt, incompetent, and narcissistic leaders, mankind is more than capable of destroying itself. The quiet, assured voice of Simon gets lost in the cacophony of violence that takes over the island. When the survivors are rescued from themselves through Golding's employment of the deus ex machina arrival of the naval office, Ralph

wept for the end of innocence, the darkness of man's heart

and along with the death of Piggy, the death of Simon, who tried to show them the way.

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What is the importance of the character Simon in Lord of the Flies? What quotes illustrate this?

Simon is an important character in the book. His character is the one that best communicates the theme of the novel that violent behavior comes from the depravity within humanity and that a "perfect" environment will soon be corrupted by humans because of their moral darkness. Simon, however, is the exception who disproves the rule, for he is the character who seems least prone to jealousy, anger, fear, bullying, and the other negative qualities the other boys display. Simon is loyal to Ralph, kind to the Littluns, and friendly to Piggy. As the most intuitive and spiritually sensitive boy on the island, he is the one who doesn't believe in the beast. When the boys are discussing the beast at the assembly, Simon says, "What I mean is . . . maybe it's only us." The others scorn his answer. Although Simon hasn't been able to express his thoughts well aloud, he understands the nature of the threat the boys face: "However Simon thought of the beast, there rose before his inward sight the picture of a human at once heroic and sick." He realizes the beast is only the evil within the boys themselves. Later he is able to tell Ralph, "I don't believe in the beast."

Simon is the one who has the vision of the Lord of the Flies, the personification of evil, and through him Golding delivers the clearest statement of the book's theme. The beast says to Simon, "Fancy thinking the Beast was something you could hunt and kill! ... You knew, didn't you? I'm part of you? Close, close, close! I'm the reason why it's no go? Why things are what they are?" This shows that the evil is "part of" the boys, and it is what causes their society to deteriorate. 

Simon, armed with the revelation that the beast the boys feared was simply a fallen paratrooper with his parachute, arrives at the camp during Jack's frenzied feast. Simon is murdered by the boys he hopes to enlighten. Being the only one who understands the nature of the threat to the boys, both literally regarding the "Beast from Air," and figuratively, regarding the darkness within them, Simon plays the role of a Christ-figure. With an ironic twist, however, he does not get a chance to deliver his "good news" before he is slain, and his death does nothing to bring salvation to the boys. 

The death of Simon is a turning point in the book. Even Ralph and Piggy, supposedly the representatives of civilization, participated in his murder. Though they try to rewrite history to say they weren't at the dance, later they admit to each other that Simon was murdered. The destruction of the civilization escalates after the lone voice of morality and truth is silenced.

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What is the significance of Simon's death in Lord of the Flies by William Golding?

The brutal murder of Simon marks an important turning point in the novel in terms of plot, characterization, and theme. Just prior to this scene, Jack has called for a vote of no confidence in Ralph, but the vote doesn't go Jack's way, so he says he's not going to play anymore and leaves the group. It doesn't take long before he has drawn many boys after him who want to hunt and honor him as chief. When he successfully kills a pig and hosts a feast on the beach, every boy except Piggy, Ralph, and Simon is lured over to Jack's camp. Eventually even Ralph and Piggy succumb to the temptation for meat. Thus the power structure has already begin to tilt away from Ralph, who represents civilization, and toward Jack, who represents violence. When Simon is murdered, it creates a further division in the two camps. Ralph, Piggy, and Samneric seem to understand what has occurred, and although they deny it outwardly, they at least acknowledge it to themselves. However, Jack uses the event to further solidify his tribe around him, using fear. He reminds the boys how "the beast" crept up on them, and he says they did not kill it, but that it still lurks about the island. 

The way the boys react to the murder reveals a great deal about the types of people they are. As mentioned, Jack uses the murder to bind his followers to him in the most immoral way--totally shrugging off the horror of what they did and using bald-faced lies to manipulate his followers. Ralph seems most impacted by the event. He clearly states to Piggy, "That was murder." From this point on in the story, Ralph finds it harder and harder to think and stay focused on rescue. It's evident that he takes his personal moral failing very seriously. Piggy, on the other hand, is willing to justify their actions, calling it "an accident." Samneric follows Piggy's lead and denies having been a part of the killing, but "memory of the dance that none of them had attended shook all four boys convulsively." Golding makes a distinction between those who feel guilt for the murder and those who brush it off.

Simon's death furthers the theme of the novel. It shows how the boys' society is plunging into depravity. The fact that "innocent" British schoolboys could commit such a heinous act with their bare hands shows clearly the darkness of the human heart. Simon is also a Christ-figure, making his death more poignant. The boys have killed the one person on the island who understood "mankind's essential illness." Looking at the novel from a historical/political perspective, where Jack represents Nazi Germany and Ralph and Piggy represent the Allies, Simon represents the church and/or the philosophical and artistic communities during World War II that were stifled and prevented from having the influence they should have had. 

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What does Simon symbolize throughout Lord of the Flies?

Before Ralph calls his assembly in the evening in Chapter 5 of "The Lord of the Flies," he "adjusts his values" and reflects,

Piggy could think.  He could go step by step inside that fat head of his...

If Piggy who stands outside "the triangle" at the assembly is the voice of logic, Simon, who is the first to recognize that the beast "is human," is the most intuitive and pure of the boys.  He is the heart of the group, as well.  When Piggy does not get any of the crabmeat in Chapter 4, Simon generously shoves his piece over to Piggy. Earlier he retrieves Piggy's glasses after Jack smacks Piggy's head. It is Simon who recognizes the evil inherent in the boys:

...maybe there is a beast....What I mean is...maybe it's only us....We could be sort of....

But, his "effort fell about him in ruins; the laughter beat him cruelly...." and he, too, stands "outside the triangle," as the boys refuse to understand the import of Simon's words.  Instead, the "evil that men do," as Shakespeare wrote, crushes the goodness in the person of Simon; the hunters kill him, chanting "kill the beast" when the beast is really within themselves.  As Simon's murdered body washes to sea, it glows with a phosphorescent light as though the soul of man has departed from the island.

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In Lord of the Flies, what is the importance of Simon?

Simon is an important and major character in Lord of the Flies because he is the only character who is able to "see" what the other boys are really fearing.

Simon is the visionary; he understands that the "Beast" the boys fear is really the evil inside themselves, the dark side of themselves they are afraid to face and that eventually takes them over. The one boy who could free them from their fear, he is murdered in a fearful, frenzied dance.

 He is a shy, quiet, and caring boy who helps take care of the younger boys.  He remains civilizied when the other boys begin acting out.  He provides a complete contrast to Jack, who is the most savage of the group. 

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What role does Simon play in the conflict of savagery versus civilization in the novel Lord of the Flies?

Simon, first introduced as a member of Jack’s choir, is generally viewed as a symbol of goodness or morality in Lord of the Flies. Particularly when contrasted with the savagery of Jack and the rest of the choir boys, Simon’s distaste for his friends’ atavistic behavior highlights his strong moral goodness.

In chapter 3, for example, Simon is the only boy to work all day with Ralph to construct shelters on the beach. Simon also treats the littluns with kindness, in stark contrast to the other choir boys’ cruel behavior of assaulting them with rocks and sticks. Simon even physically sequesters himself from the others by sleeping and resting in his own peaceful spot in the jungle.

Throughout the novel, Simon alone remains untouched by the bloodlust for hunting and irrational terror of “The Beast.” Simon is the only boy who sees the truth of their situation clearly and suggests that the beast is a figment of their collective imagination. The fact that Simon, the purest emblem of ethical conduct in the novel, is the first casualty of the escalating violence is significant thematically because it signals the death of any remnants of civilization left in the boys. Simon’s death marks the beginning of the boys’ rapid descent into violence and savagery.

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What role does Simon play in the conflict of savagery versus civilization in the novel Lord of the Flies?

While the other boys in Lord of the Flies are drawn to savagery and immoral behavior, Simon is different. Unlike the other boys, Simon posses an innate goodness and inherent sense of morality which presents him as a prophet-like character. As Golding looks into the development of the other boys, who quickly jettison their civilized ways once they are far from their parents and social constructs, Simon holds true to his sense of right and wrong, not because he has to, but because he knows it's right. This offers a stark contrast to the island's other boys. His death shows that, despite their previous actions, the boys do have guilt for killing one of their own and have not abandoned all of civilization's values.

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What is the importance of Simon in Lord of the Flies?

Golding probably took Simon's name from the New Testament, referring to Peter, to whom Christ said "Upon this rock I will build my church." Lead disciple of Christ in the Bible, Simon in the novel is a shy visionary, perceptive but inarticulate, an embodiment of moral understanding. We see when eh with Ralph and Jack find the dark green bushes with folded buds that look like candles, which Simon calls "candles." Later Simon retreats her, and as night arrives, the "candles" open into white flowers with the scent spilling :"out into the air" (Chpts 1 and 3). He is the one that finds the Head, realizing its significance, that the beast represents the evil (or imperfections) with human nature. He loses consciousness when he realizes this. For all of these reasons, especially his ability to understand the truth of the beast, he is central to the meaning of the novel. That he faints shows his frailty, a losing of childhood innocence.

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What is Simon's importance to Lord of the Flies, and how is he presented?

I forgot to add quotes in the above post. Probably Simon's best words of wisdom are the following:

"What are we, humans or animals?"

"Maybe there is a beast... maybe it's only us."

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What is Simon's importance to Lord of the Flies, and how is he presented?

Simon serves as the potential moral savior and voice of reason in Lord of the Flies. Although not as old as Ralph or Jack, his leadership abilities are seen by Ralph early in the story; and, though not as intelligent as Piggy, Simon is obviously bright and sound in his approach to the boys' problems. He is the first to recognize that "the beast" is not really some supernatural being, and he shows his courage by his willingness to make another trek to discover its true origin. He finds it necessary to retreat into solitude in order to clear his head and see things more clearly and, along with Piggy, he becomes a symbol of sacrifice when the boys tear him to pieces during their blood-lust frenzy. 

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