The Lord of the Flies by Sir William Gerald Golding

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Lord of the Flies 10-12This week I was supposed to read, in the book Lord of the Flies, chapters 10 through 12. While I was reading there were many things that were running through my head. First off, when I started reading I was thinking about why the boys would rather go to Jack’s camp rather than Ralph’s because Jack was mean to them, he had no respect for them at all except for himself. This was just one of the many different questions speeding through my head.

In chapter 10 is talks about the day after the attak on Simon and how no one wants to take the blame. The next morning, Ralph finds that only Piggy, Samneric, and some littluns remain in his camp. Brooding over the previous night’s events, he points out to Piggy that they murdered Simon. Piggy objects to the use of the term “murder” and doesn’t want Samneric to know that he and Ralph were at least somewhat involved in the deadly dance.

Samneric don’t want to admit their own involvement, either.

I think that someone needs to fess up and take part of the responsibility because a boy was just killed for goodness sake and everyone is trying to cover it up by pointing fingers. That won’t do any good for Simon. The real person who needs to take control over this situation should be Ralph but he is too scared to do anything about what happened the night before.

Jack begins acting ever more like a cruel dictator to his own tribe members, having one of the boys tied up and beaten for angering him. He plans a raid on Ralph’s camp to get fire for another pig roast and tries to convince his uneasy followers that they had beaten but not killed the beast the previous night. The beast had come to them in disguise, he asserts, in utter denial that they had killed one of their former group. While I was reading this I was thinking that Jack is trying to brain wash his members to do whatever and think whatever he says to do. They need to get out and leave Jack or he will end up having more of his followers killed or beaten because of even the smallest things.

Back at Ralph’s camp, the boys decide to let the fire die for the night rather than collect more wood in the dark. Because Jack and his raiders can’t steal burning branches, they attack Ralph’s group and steal Piggy’s glasses. I think that this was just a stupid move on Jack’s part because they don’t need his glasses. They just wanted to take them to taunt Piggy and make his life more miserable. I wish that these boys would just grow up and start taking some responsibility for their own actions.

Ralph calls an assembly at Piggy’s urging, wherein they decide the four remaining biguns will ask Jack’s tribe for the glasses back, reminding them of a signal fire’s importance. Samneric express a real fear of approaching the other boys who have now become complete savages. This scene was a really good one because I saw Ralph grow up a little because he was finally doing something for someone other than himself.

Jack’s tribe is hostile to Ralph’s little group; Roger throws stones at the twins to scare them. Jack emerges from the forest where he had been hunting and tells Ralph to go back to his end of the island. When Ralph calls him a thief for stealing Piggy’s glasses, they fence briefly with their spears before Piggy reminds Ralph to focus on their agenda. I knew that this was coming because Jack is a savage with his actions compared to Ralph who tries to not fight physically because they doesn’t solve anything ever.

When Ralph makes a speech about how they really need a signal fire so that they could get rescued the savages all laughed at his attempt to make peace with Jack’s crew. When Jack orders Samneric to be tied up, this suddenly causes a fist fight between him and Ralph which I didn’t see coming because I thought that Ralph would never fight, but apparently I was wrong. When Piggy grabs the conch to try to speak to them, Roger, being a savage himself, moves a boulder off the cliff and brings Piggy to the sea below where his body is carried off just as Simon’s was. When this happened, I just about let a scream out myself because I didn’t think that Roger would ever do such a thing. It didn’t make sense to me, but then I thought about how Simon was killed and it all started to make a little bit more sense.

When Jack wins the fight, he jumps and yells out a victory scream and then pierces Ralph with his spear. Although the spear bounces off, Ralph continues to run, fearing for his life. He leaves both Sam and Eric still tied up and soon to be tortured by Roger. I was praying that Jack wouldn’t win the fight but when Piggy was hit Ralph stopped and looked which made him lose and get speared. At this point, I’m just waiting for the book to get over with and for them to get rescued already because I was sick of reading about 12 year old boys killing each other.

While the tribe feasts inside Castle Rock, Ralph makes his way back to the platform. Once there, he is reluctant to spend the night alone in the shelter and decides to return to Jack’s end of the island to try reasoning with them again. On the way, he encounters the pig’s skull that had spoken to Simon. Finding it eerily life-like and knowing, he knocks it to the ground and takes the stake as a weapon.

Back at Castle Rock, he sees that Samneric are on watch, having been forced to join the tribe. He approaches them cautiously, hoping to win back their loyalty. They tell him of the manhunt planned for the next day and give him some meat. Someone from the tribe hears them talking to Ralph and punishes them. I thought that Ralph would have known better than to go to them, they could have killed him! I was very surprised that they didn’t though, I thought they might have because of being forced to join Jack’s tribe.

Ralph finds a place to sleep for the night. The next morning, his hiding place, a dense thicket, is betrayed by Samneric. The tribe is unsuccessful at reaching him in the thicket, so they flush him out by rolling boulders into it and setting it on fire. Once Ralph is on the run, the tribe follows him, communicating with each other with a creepy cry. This scene was pretty intense to read because again, you are reading about 11 and 12 year old boys who are doing this to other boys their same age. This whole book was crazy to read because you would think that they wouldn’t have the courage or the stomach to do such things to one another but apparently, they do!By the time Ralph finds somewhere to hide again, he is found again, finally he makes it to the beach where he falls at the foot of a British Naval Officer whose ship was attracted to the smoke of the fire. I was so thankful that someone had seen the fire because I really didn’t want Jack and his members to kill Ralph too. The British officer confirmed that his boat would take him home and when Ralph heard that, he started to weep for all that he had lost on the island. I knew that he would cry, and I figured that they would have to tell the officer what happened. I hope that Ralph tells the truth and doesn’t leave out that Jack started it all.

Golding, William. Lord of the flies a novel. New York: Perigee, 1954.