Golding shows conflict in Lord of the Flies in a number of ways. Perhaps most notably, he shows conflict between the boys themselves. There is the obvious conflict between Ralph and Jack, but there are also smaller conflicts between other pairs and groups of boys. Golding also shows conflict between the boys and the environment, as well as between the boys and the beasts that they imagine are on the island. All of these conflicts contribute to the overall tension of the novel.
In Lord of the Flies, Golding shows a lot of conflict throughout the novel, between the boys, nature, and the boys’ personal lives. The theme of conflict is crucial to depicting the argument and fighting that went on in World War II during Lord of the Flies’s creation and that Golding himself witnessed firsthand. In Lord of the Flies, Golding emphasizes how horrible men can be to one another, which is an obvious link to his message.
Conflict is first introduced in the novel when the plane carrying the boys crashes on the island. The boys are split into two groups, those who want to be led by Ralph and those who want to be lead by Jack. This creates a clear sense of conflict between the two groups as they are competing for leadership. The conflict between Ralph and Jack becomes increasingly violent as the novel progresses, with each group trying to harm or kill members of the other.
The boys also experience conflict with nature on the island. They are constantly having to battle against the weather, including a hurricane, and try to find food and shelter. Their lack of experience means that they are often unsuccessful in these tasks, which leads to further conflict within the group.
Finally, the boys experience conflict within themselves. Many of them are struggling to deal with the fact that they are stranded on the island and are facing difficult choices. For example, Ralph must decide whether to continue trying to be rescued or give up and accept their fate. This internal conflict is often portrayed through the character of Simon, who struggles with his own mental health throughout the novel.
Golding uses conflict to show how easily it can lead to violence and how it can tear people apart both physically and mentally. He also shows how difficult it is to resolve conflict, particularly when there are such strong differences between those involved.
The first and most important conflict in Lord of the Flies occurs when Golding attempts to introduce the main themes at the start of the book. The conflicts of World War II brought the boys to the island itself. While world-wide turmoil rages, tensions build on the island, a microcosm of humanity. We also witness tension and conflict between Ralph and Piggy for a variety of reasons.
Ralph is the elected leader and Piggy is his right-hand man, but there are times when Ralph doesn’t listen to Piggy’s ideas or takes credit for them. There is also conflict between Ralph and Jack, as Jack wants to be in charge and does not agree with Ralph’s methods of leadership. This eventually leads to a physical confrontation between the two boys.
Golding uses conflict to show how quickly civilized society can break down, and how easily humans can reverted back to their primal state without the restraints of law and order. The novel is a microcosm for the world, and Golding uses it to explore the human condition. By showing how conflict can arise even in the most seemingly ideal circumstances, Golding highlights our capacity for violence and destruction.
Ralph, on the other hand, considers himself to be superior to Piggy because he is physically more appealing and athletic than she is. While Jack is characterized as a “fair boy,” a sign of moral goodness and purity who might become a boxer in terms of width and weight of his shoulders, and with “size” that “identified him out.” Piggy, on the other hand, is deemed to be plump, shorter than the fair boy, and extremely fat. Ralph also insults piggy by referring to her derisive nickname.
This shows us that there is already conflict between Ralph and Piggy. When they are choosing who should be the leader, Ralph is voted in over Jack due to his good looks and athleticism as the boys think he will be able to provide them with food. This frustrates Jack as he wanted to be the leader and have power over the others. Jack is jealous of Ralph and this envy leads to more conflict later on in the novel.
One of the main conflicts in Lord of the Flies is between civilisation and savagery. The boys start off behaving like they would at school following rules and acting civilised. However, as time goes by, they start forgetting about rules and behaving more like animals. They even paint their faces with clay and charcoal to look more savage.
The conflict between Ralph and Jack becomes more evident when they have a fight about the fire. The fire is important as it is a signal to any passing ships that they are there and need rescuing. It is also a way of cooking food. However, Jack and his hunters are more interested in hunting than keeping the fire going. They would rather go off into the forest to kill pigs than stay at the beach and keep the fire alight. Ralph gets angry with them and this leads to a big argument.
Ralph tries to reason with Jack saying that if they don’t keep the fire going, then they will never be rescued and they will all die.
The pirates spot a ship out on the horizon, and Piggy and Ralph recognize that the signal fire has gone out. Once again, Jack and Ralph argue over who is to blame when it was Jack’s responsibility as the choir leader to keep the fire burning. “You and your blood, Jack Merridew! You and your hunting! We might have gone home,” fumes Ralph.
This shows that Ralph is fed up with Jack and his hunting, and he feels that they have wasted valuable time that could have been spent trying to get rescued.
Jack then tries to take charge and tells Ralph that he is not the chief any more as he did not blow the conch. This leads to a physical fight between the two boys which is only broken up when Piggy intervenes. Piggy tell them both off, saying “‘Which is better – to be a pack of painted Indians like you are, or sensible like Ralph is?’”