English / Symbolism In Piggy'S Specs

Symbolism In Piggy'S Specs

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Autor:  anton  03 November 2010
Tags:  Symbolism,  Piggys
Words: 547   |   Pages: 3
Views: 416

The Symbolism of Piggy's glasses

Symbolism pervades throughout the entire narrative of Lord of the Flies and is used to illustrate the fears and tensions that exist within the boys trapped on the island. One of the novel's strength is that it weaves these vivid symbols together to assist its themes and ideas rather than labour them.

Piggy's glasses become an important symbol representing the social order of the boys as they try to determine how to lead themselves. Although not a leader Piggy is the voice of reason as he mends the early splits between the boys by way of compromising. Of all the boys on the island it is Piggy who can seen as the most symbolic.

His organisation helps the boys make the early decisions and he can be seen as the natural law of order, the reason thinking of humanity. Although despite being described as short and fat in the terms you might describe an animal as Piggy is the most willing to strive for survival in a civialised way. It is Piggy who says the most important words describing how the boys should act "What are we? Humans? Or animals? Or savages. What are grownups going to think?"

It is this desire for docorum that underlines Piggy's belief that they will all be saved from the island - the only person to believe this will happen. Therefore Piggy himself becomes symbolic of the boys' hope to be saved from the island. The hope literally comes from his glasses. Piggy's spectacles are taken from him and used to start smoke signals. Without glasses Piggy's sight, like the boys' vision of what is in their best interests, becomes blurred.

Piggy, now weakened, is no longer able to aid Ralph in his struggle to lead the group. Without the voice of adulthood that is Piggy, Ralph loses his moral guidance and begins to make bad judgments. The greater Piggy's will to escape and claim salvation so Ralph is drawn into the confusion and misguided pleasures of The Beast". As each pig is killed so a small part of what Piggy represents is corroded away.

When Piggy's glasses are broken all apparent hope of escaping with them is destroyed as well. By making the glasses useless the boys are rejecting what the spectacles stand for. Now no longer able to function at all the 'short and fat' Piggy becomes an animal like the rest of the boys, where only the fittest survive.

Although unlike the other boys because of his impairment he is the hunted not the hunter. Piggy is now a pig that gets kicked and beaten by Jack and his followers, so the boys are not just rejecting what Piggy represents they are using violence to vehemently oppose it.

When Piggy is killed the boys have descended into barbarians whose only desire is to stay alive and kill Ralph the only person to oppose them. It is only by chance that the boys are found on the island. As savages, they have no interest in returning to civilasition. This is perhaps, the most haunting aspect of the novel. The rules and carefully structured social order of our society can be easily forgotten and man is a beast of nature that is no better than the piggy he kills.

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