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Civilization VS. Savagery
Rules and Order
Throughout the novel, the conflict is dramatized by the clash between Ralph and Jack, who respectively represent civilization and savagery. While Ralph uses his authority to establish rules, protect the good of the group, and enforce the moral and ethical codes of the English society the boys were raised in, Jack is interested in gaining power over the other boys to gratify his most primal impulses.
When the boys are first deserted on the island, they behave like children, alternating between enjoying their freedom and expressing profound homesickness and fear. By the end of the novel, however, they mirror the warlike behavior of the adults of the Home Counties: they attack, torture, and even murder one another without hesitation or regret.
Golding's point holds: humans are basically corrupt and inherently evil. Rules and order keep people from their true, violent natures. Lord of the Flies tells us that, as soon as you put people outside of a system with punishments and consequences, they'll get busy destroying themselves.
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