Inherent Evil: Lord of the Flies

Category: Lord of the Flies
Last Updated: 18 Apr 2023
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Many say human kind is inherently evil, that there is evil in all of us. William Golding strongly confirms this point in his novel The Lord of the Flies. The Lord of the Flies expresses what can happen to man when there is not structure and little mean of survival. The boys prove man to be inherently evil through control, mistreatment, and murder. The boys in the Lord of the Flies illustrate that human kind is inherently evil through excessive control. Firstly, Jack starts to control his choir to become more savage. Jack says to Ralph, “I’ll split up the choir-my hunters that it, “ (Golding 42).

Here Jack tries to make his choir seem to be more savage, calling them hunters. Secondly, Jack again exercises the need for control by going against the rules. Jack speaks out, “ Bollocks to the rules! Were strong- we hunt…we’ll close in and beat and beat and beat,” (99). Jack breaks the rules wanting to have his own control. Thirdly, by brutally beating Wilfred, Jack demonstrates excessive control. Ralph told, “ He’s going to beat Wilfred…. he didn’t say what for. He got angry and made us tie him up,” (176). This Young 2 uotes shows how Jack has taken control making the boys tie up and help beat Wilfred. The excessive control used by the boys in the novel supports the idea that man is inherently evil, although it is also shown through other ways such as how the boys treat each other. The novel proves the point man is evil through the mistreatment the boys have for each other. To start, mistreatment is shown through the disrespect the boys have for each other. Jack tell Piggy, “Shut up, Fatty,” (17). Jack is insulting Piggy as many of the boys insult and hurt each other, mistreating others.

Next, Samneric show evidence of mistreatment by betraying Ralph. Samneric tell Ralph of Jack’s plan for him. However, later they betray Ralph by telling Jack where he is hiding (207). In this section Samneric mistreat Ralph when they betray him this way. Last, Jack performs mistreatment when he steals Piggy’s glasses. Ralph confronts Jack, “You came sneaking up like a thief and stole Piggy’s glasses,” (196). Even though the boys in The Lord of the Flies mistreat each other proving man is inherently evil, killing plays a major part as well.

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Golding confirms that man is inherently evil by the murders displayed by the boys. The first point is the intentional; murder of Piggy. Golding describes the murder, “ The rock struck Piggy a glancing blow from chin to knee…” (200). This vicious murder of Piggy strongly suggests evil. In addition, is the unintentional, but denied murder of Simon. Ralph is honest with Piggy, “That was Simon…. That was murder,”(172). In this quote Ralph explains to Piggy that they all killed Simon and that it was murder. Finally, there is the in-humane killing of the pig which the boys participated in.

The author describes it, “ The first blow had paralyzed its hind quarters so then the circle could close Young 3 in and beat and beat,’(79). The savage killing of the pig shows the boys blood lust for murder. Murder strongly demonstrates that human kind is in fact inherently evil. In The Lord of the Flies the author affirms man is inherently evil through the boys control, mistreatment, and murders. Deep down without rules and society and the instinct to survive savagery evil may take over. Everyone has the capacity to be evil. Golding has strongly supported and proves this to be corrects in the novel.

Related Questions

on Inherent Evil: Lord of the Flies

What is man's inherent evil in Lord of the Flies?
Man's inherent evil in Lord of the Flies is the capacity for violence, savagery, and destruction that exists within all humans. This is demonstrated by the boys' descent into chaos and violence as they become increasingly isolated from civilization and the rules of society. The boys' descent into savagery is a reflection of the darkness that exists within all humans.
What is the quote about inherent evil?
The quote about inherent evil is a reference to the idea that people are born with a capacity for evil, and that this capacity is an inherent part of human nature. It suggests that people are capable of doing evil things without any external influence or provocation.
What is inherent goodness in Lord of the Flies?
In Lord of the Flies, the inherent goodness of the boys is demonstrated through their attempts to maintain order and civility in the face of their chaotic and dangerous situation. Despite their fear and confusion, they still strive to create a society with rules and regulations, and they are willing to work together to survive. This shows that even in the most dire of circumstances, the boys still possess a sense of morality and compassion.
What are the representations of evil in Lord of the Flies?
In Lord of the Flies, evil is represented in a variety of ways. The most obvious representation of evil is the character of Jack, who is driven by his own selfish desires and is willing to do whatever it takes to get what he wants. Additionally, the island itself is a representation of evil, as it is a place of chaos and violence, and the boys' descent into savagery is a representation of the darkness that lurks within human nature.

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Inherent Evil: Lord of the Flies. (2017, May 07). Retrieved from

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