Conch Symbolism In Lord Of The Flies Essays

Significance Of The Conch In Lord Of The Flies Essay

861 Words4 Pages

"A conch he called it. He used to blow it and his mum would come. It's ever so valuable" – Piggy, Lord of the Flies. The conch is a sea creature, its shell is revered in many cultures such as Hinduism and Buddhism for its beauty and the sound it makes. The conch is also that shell in Lord of the Flies which is blown into to gather the boys. The author, William Golding, uses the conch to show that democracy will succumb to rule by force in the face of serious trouble or need. In the book, it is a symbol of democratic power but it is not without its enemies who eventually overrule it.

The conch is a symbol of democratic power at the beginning of the story. First, it is used to gather the boys. Ralph blows the conch to assemble them…show more content…

This is best shown when Ralph says "I'll blow the conch […] and call an assembly", Jack responds "We shan't hear it."(167) As a result, we can see that Jack is an enemy of democracy, as any authoritarian ruler would be. Moreover, Jack uses torture to make people do his bidding. We see this when he tortures Sam with a spear, "'What do you mean by not joining my tribe?' The prodding became rhythmic. Sam yelled."(202) We can therefore see that Jack uses pain and fear to rule, another characteristic of dictators such as Sadaam Hussein. Lastly, rocks of all shapes and sizes are used by Jack and his tribe for aggression, another tool of rule by force. One example of this is the use of a boulder to smash anyone who approaches Castle Rock, this is shown in chapter 10 "Robert leaned lightly of the lever and the rock groaned. A full effort would send the rock thundering down to the neck of land. Roger admired."(176) Thus, rocks are tools of Jack's dictatorship and symbols of rule by force. Since Jack opposes democracy, tortures to rule and uses tools such as rocks for aggression; he, his tribe and rocks are symbols of rule by force.

The conch loses its power to Jack and all that symbolises rule by force. As mentioned before, Jack openly disregards the conch and the power it gives. Because of this event, we can see that the conch is starting to lose its power. In addition, Jack does not care for the conch even if he can have it. We see this when Jack

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Essay about The Conch in William Golding's Lord of the Flies

1532 Words7 Pages

The Conch in William Golding's Lord of the Flies

In William Golding's novel “Lord of the Flies” he uses a lot of symbolism. The entire book is microcosm to the real world, as the novel is set at the time when World War II was going on and on the island there is a hunt at the end of the book symbolic of the war. A symbol Golding uses throughout the book is the conch. It represents authority and order. The person holding the conch had the power, and it created order and rules since when it was called, everyone had to listen and order is displayed by the meetings or gatherings that it’s used to call and hold.

In this essay I will be explaining how William Golding used the conch in the “Lord…show more content…

You could use shells to buy food, clothes and other general items. On the island the shell is worthless as they cannot buy anything with it or sell it for food as they are only people on the island. This is why I believe that Golding used a conch as historically, it is precious, expensive and unique. Towards the end of the novel, Jack realises that it is worthless and rebels against the shell and at it represents, civilization, order and democracy. He believes that it is “just a shell.”

The Conch's power is presented in the very beginning as the children vote for Ralph to be chief just because he was the one with the Conch. "Him with the shell." "Ralph! Ralph!" "Let him be chief with the trumpet thing" ' this excerpt from Page 22 shows how everybody seems to think that power, responsibility and leadership skills comes from the Conch.

Another Example of the Conch's Power is the fact that through out the novel the conch is the only tool that can call a meeting and wherever the Conch is that’s where the meeting is. No other symbol in “Lord of the Flies” holds so much power. This is one of the reasons that Jack Merridew disrespects the Conch. He wants to break the spell the symbol has on everybody.

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