Chapter 8 Plot Summary: Lord of the Flies by William Golding

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In chapter eight, Jack attempts to overthrow Ralph's leadership. Due to his arrogant belief that he held a majority in the group of boys, Jack attempted to gain leadership democratically by way of an election. Ralph won the vote by a landslide, which was an unsustainable blow to Jack's ego: "He [Jack] leapt down from the platform and ran along the beach, paying no heed to the steady fall of his tears; and until he dived into the forest Ralph watched him" (140). As a result of this upset, Jack abandoned the group of boys, taking a small portion of them with him to form a separate clan on the island.

The newly formed clan was led by Jack. Jack's group consisted primarily of hunters, as such, their main activity of any given day was hunting. Jack, fearing the nt presence of the "beast" on the island, instructed his hunters to leave a small portion of each of their kills behind as a type of sacrifice to the "beast," in the hopes that the "beast" would be pleased and leave them alone: "'When we kill we'll leave some of the kill for it [the "beast"].

Then it won't bother us, maybe'" (147).

The "Lord of the Flies" is introduced in chapter eight. Jack killed a sow, placing its head on a stake, claiming: "'This head is for the beast. It's a gift'" (151). Though most boys present exhibited few external signs of alarm at Jack's peculiar actions, the event greatly affected Simon. He began to hallucinate, believing the "Lord of the Flies" was conversing with him: "'Or else,' said the Lord of the Flies, 'we shall do you [Simon]. See? Jack and Roger and Maurice and Robert and Bill and Piggy and Ralph. Do you [Simon]. See?'" (159).

Additionally, chapter eight brings Jack's newly formed group to realize their need for fire. Instead of making their own fire, they decide to steal some from Ralph's group: "'We'll [Jack's group] raid them [Ralph's group] and take fire'" (150). While stealing the fire from Ralph's group, Jack made an invitation to Ralph's group: "'To-night we're [Jack's group] having a feast. We've killed a pig and we've got meat. You [Ralph's group] can come and eat with us if you like'" (155). Jack intended to recruit followers from Ralph's group at this feast, which was his sole purpose in extending the invitation to the boys. When Jack's group had left, Ralph and Piggy had a discussion about the event: "'When I [Piggy] saw Jack I was sure he'd go for the conch. Can't think why'" (155). Piggy's feelings seemed to foreshadow a coming event in the novel; however, Ralph dismissed Piggy's sombre thoughts: "'They're having fun,'" (156) claimed Ralph.

In the latter part of the chapter, we were returned to Simon's "conversation" with the "Lord of the Flies." The chapter ended when Simon fainted, because he was overwhelmed by the "words" of the "Lord of the Flies": "Simon was inside the mouth. He fell down and lost consciousness" (159).