Lord of the Flies5
William Golding uses much symbolism in his novel, The Lord of the Flies, to help readers gain a greater
understanding of his message. He uses symbolism in three important areas: objects that have symbolic value as
references to ideas, characters that symbolize important historical and religious people, and the setting which
frames the conflicts on the island in comparison to the whole world. Objects are the first part of the story that are
symbolic. Many objects in The Lord of the Flies have important symbolic value. The conch shell represents
power and authority, and Ralph uses it to call for the boys to come to meetings. Whoever has the shell has the
power to talk. The conch shows how people use objects to give power, like a crown, sceptre, or other thins that
show who has power. We also learn that objects don’t really give power when people choose not to obey it, like
Ralph’s conch. The pig’s head, or Lord of the Flies, is an important object.
To Jack it is a sacrifice for the beast.
This object shows that people will make religions and rituals to control their world, even when what they think is
not true. The Lord of the Flies is also a symbol of Satan, or the Devil. When Simon talked with the Lord of the
Flies, he learned what the real evil was, which is the evil in people’s hearts. The
Lord of the Flies is a symbol of