Character Analysis of "Lord of the Flies"

Essay by jagsacHigh School, 11th gradeA+, April 2006

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In the book, "The Lord of the Flies", there are quite a few main characters. However, three are the most important overall. Ralph, the leader of the group, who does not really know what to do most of the time, seems to be the main character of the story (based on the fact that it is through his perspective that we see everything). Jack, the natural leader, takes over in the story, and makes a tribe of his own. Lastly, Simon is possibly the most symbolic character in the novel. He's quiet, shy, and actually knows what is going on most of the time. Jack is able to manipulate a group to get what he wants, whereas Ralph is more one that gets manipulated, and Simon stays immune to any manipulations.

Jack, in the story, makes the kids act as if his orders are what they want to do. Because of this trait, he is able to steal Ralph's authority.

A prime example of this is when Samneric join Jack's tribe, and then betray Ralph even though they were his friend. Because they are now part of Jack's tribe, they want to be the savages that he makes them. Sam and Eric are probably the most reluctant out of anybody, but the fact is there just the same. At the dance that killed Simon, everyone is ready to follow Jack's example, which is dancing around the fire. Then, when Simon appears, Jack charges, and so does everybody else.

Ralph in the story represents the manipulated. He follows Piggy's example, and at times falls under Jack's influence. Throughout the whole story, until the very end, Ralph is following someone else's advice or example. When he goes hunting, he craves Jack's attention, Jack's approval. Ralph gets caught up in the whole ideal...