Reviews from Lord Taylor of Glencoe
Lord of the Flies: William Golding, July 28—31, 2016
My rating: ♦♦♦♦◊
William Golding’s classic, Lord of the Flies, sees a group of young boys crash land on a desert island and fend for themselves. Through it, Golding paints a bleak picture of human nature and our reliance on established civilised society.
Many essays can be, and indeed have been, written on Flies. Not least, Piggy: the overweight, unpopular but intelligent loser; Ralph: the organised, analytical elected leader; and Jack: the charismatic, rebellious antagonist who doesn’t wish to be led.
The boys’ disastrous efforts to govern themselves will leave you covering your eyes, but it’s realistic and brutal. Without adult supervision, the boys make their own rules. Without society as we know it, our natures – argues Golding – will reveal themselves.
It’s bleak, but well-written and darkly fascinating. It’s become a classic not just because its characters are believable or because its storyline is tight, but because it tells truths about humanity that haven’t changed in the 62 years since it was published.