The Lord of the Flies – Introduction
When a group of schoolboys are in a plane crash over a deserted island in the midst of a violent global war, they are faced with an opportunity to create their own unique social order that will focus on efforts to their discovery and rescue. Heading this school of thought is the story’s protagonist, Ralph.
With his supporters, Ralph takes leadership of the boys and directs them to follow established rules and efforts to be rescued. He appoints Jack, another schoolboy, as the head of the hunters. Whereas Ralph represents civility and order, Jack represents wildness and savagery. Eventually, all social structures and rules established under Ralph fail as the boys succumb to their wild natures.
Lord of the Flies Characters
Who are the main characters in Lord of the Flies?
- Protagonist – Ralph
- Antagonist – Jack
- Narrator – Third person omniscient
Lord of the Flies Character Descriptions
How old is Ralph? The twelve-year-old leader of the island. He is elected as the leader early on because of his pragmatic attitude and instincts to create some sort of civilization on the island in hopes that they will be rescued. Ralph is a clear representation of humanity’s instincts for order.
How old is Jack? One of the older boys and leader of the group of hunters. He is not happy being just the leader of the hunters, however, and his thirst for power turns into a blood thirst as well. He and his group of hunters devolve into savagery and manipulate the other boys into following them. He represents the wilder instincts that humans possess.
How old is Simon? A sensitive boy in Ralph’s group. He is eager to help build structures for the younger boys and to build a signal fire that will help them get noticed by any passing ships. He is kind to the younger boys even when many of the older boys are more prone to bullying them. Simon has a strong moral code and is very drawn to nature’s beauty. He is a representation of natural goodness as opposed to Jack’s savagery and Ralph’s imposed morality that is said to stem from civilization.
A whiny but intellectual boy who supports Ralph. He frequently serves as a voice of reason but is often ignored or mocked because of his size and whiny nature. He is a representation of the more intellectual aspects of civilization.
A cruel boy who supports Jack. He likes to terrorize the younger boys and winds up killing Piggy by rolling a boulder onto him.
Sam and Eric
The twins responsible for keeping the signal fire alight. They eventually fall in line with Jack’s manipulation
The Lord of the Flies
The name given to the sow’s head impaled on a stick by Jack and his hunters. He symbolizes instincts for cruelty and rise to power that Jack’s group of boys embody.