- Why did everyone start to hate the Russians if the U.S. did the same thing in Afghanistan, Iraq?
- What needs to be corrected in the management of Russia first?
- Why did Blaise Pascal become a religious man at the end of his life?
- How do I know if a guy likes you?
- When they say "one generation", how many do they mean?
The main thing to note about Golding right away is that he works in opposition to a much wider range of cultural trends than just the idealistic robinsonade of Coral Island and others, since Coral Island was just the embodiment of very serious and unambiguous cults of English national exclusivity, rationalism, technology and colonial ambitions.
In other words, Golding is not just a reaction to World War II, but to everything from the eighteenth century onwards. On faith in man as something inherently reasonable, and faith in progress as a solution to all the world's problems.
For Golding, man produces evil as a bee produces honey. Golding simultaneously recognizes that a person is sick, and that this condition is natural. Simply, the disease of the product of evil is the natural state of a person, from which it is impossible to get out.
At the same time, “Lord of the Flies” is not a construction of some “more realistic” scenario that demonstrates how “Coral Island” should have turned out “in reality”. It is no coincidence that Golding's novels are described as parables – they are not just short narratives that contain some kind of edifying moral, they are also things that initially work as an interaction of allegories. Characters with a capital letter.
And here you probably need to say a few words about the three alternatives presented in the text. It is not difficult to understand what roles are assigned to the two victims of what is happening, and why the first is killed by a mystic, and the second by a scientist. But who exactly is Ralph in this narrative?
At first glance, Ralph is an organic protagonist to “root for”, placed in the narrative as a stereotype of neutral everyday prudence, which most readers consider themselves models for good reason, and therefore can easily put themselves in Ralph's place and look at what is happening from his point of view.
In the second, Ralph is the most meaningless character in the book, since he performs almost no action in the narrative. He is not the leader, as Jack is obviously the leader. He is neither a mystic nor a scientist. He doesn't even fit the template of the classic Robinson Crusoe, about which we know for sure that in a couple of years he will build a two-story cottage on the island, raise goats and teach a parrot English. Strictly speaking, if you remove Ralph from the story, then almost nothing will change in it.
Except that then it won't be told. Ralph's role is more than just giving the reader a sense of being chased by a mob of deadly teenagers. If Simon is a mystic and Piggy is a scientist, then Ralph is a writer.
Which actually perfectly follows the life path of Golding himself. Golding is the son of an atheist, a non-church Christian who planned a career in the natural sciences, but became disillusioned with them, went through the war, where he saw enough of Jack, and eventually decided to become Ralph. A survivor crying over his lost innocence, and the only one who can tell you what happened.
So there are alternatives. They do not negate the naturalness of evil for Golding, nor do they affirm the superiority of man over this evil – neither a particular person, nor the idea of man in general. But these are alternatives.
Another thing is that Golding does not put such high hopes in them, since both the children in the novel, and the adults who save them, and Golding himself are creatures of the same world, which barely managed to finish one world war, as it immediately began the next, even more destructive one. Soldiers coming to rescue savages from themselves is a direct metaphor for the colonial era, and probably Golding's cruelest metaphor.
Yes, everything is as simple as possible – if you put aside the principles, morals and rules, then something unnatural for people will break in – this is the animal principle. And once a civilized person, with his own principles and rules, will become a natural monster, called the Lord of the flies (from the Hebrew “lord of the flies” translates as “Beelzebub”, that is, the devil.
This is a warning novel, a parable novel that shows that society, no matter how strong it is, can at any moment split and become isolated from everything, even from the norms of morality. And given that the main characters of the novel are children, it becomes clear that even such harmless and angelic creatures can kill a civilized person in a matter of minutes by summoning their second essence-a doppelganger. The ending of the novel points to those who can prevent the inevitable chaos and bacchanalia. As I said earlier, the novel is a warning, therefore, a guide for adults, how to raise and raise a good law-abiding citizen who will live according to the rules of morality and norms that, in fact, are so necessary for humanity. Otherwise, what are we without them?