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Book title

Lord of the flies



William Golding


Bibliographic information

Lord of the Flies is a 1954 novel by Nobel Prize–winning British author William Golding.

Author           :           William Golding

Country:        United Kingdom

Language:    English

Genre:           Allegorical novel

Publisher:     Faber and Faber

Publication date: 1954.

Media type:   Print (Paperback)

ISBN  0-571-05686-5 (first edition, paperback)


Links (adaptations, reviews, full texts etc.)



The book focuses on a group of British boys stranded on an uninhabited island and their disastrous attempt to govern themselves.

At an allegorical level, the central theme is the conflicting human impulses toward civilisation and social organisation—living by rules, peacefully and in harmony—and toward the will to power. Themes include the tension between groupthink and individuality, between rational and emotional reactions, and between morality and immorality. How these play out, and how different people feel the influences of these form a major subtext of Lord of the Flies. The name "Lord of the Flies" is a literal translation of Beelzebub.


Short summary

In the midst of a wartime evacuation, a British aeroplane crashes on or near an isolated island in a remote region of the Pacific Ocean. The only survivors are boys in their middle childhood or preadolescence. Two boys Ralph and Jack organize two different groups of boys-Ralph is trying to be democratic and compassionate, but Jack is a hunter and he provides the food for his own tribe by killing wild pigs . Although at first boy were with Ralph, by the end majority of the boys goes in Jack’s tribe.

Soon a few of the boys begin to develop paranoias about the island. The central paranoia refers to a supposed monster they call the "beast", which they all slowly begin to believe exists on the island. Ralph insists that no such beast exists, but Jack gains a level of control over the group by boldly promising to kill the creature.


Why is the story appropriate for the targeted groups of RSP readers (in accordance to Content development criteria)?

  1. Reflects political/historical moment.                                                                         
  2. Promotes understanding of  civilizational man versus human impulses.
  3. Refers to morality and imorality.


How are the distinguished readers' interests reflected in this book/story?

Although published in 1954, Golding's novel is current in the real world today. As the novelty of the novel is not lost, there are always new film adaptations of the novel. Indeed, the novel opens up a series of general, sociological, and philosophical problems that are encouraging to talk to students. Let the novel impersonate: What is the character of a good leader? Is it possible to achieve democracy? How much is man fighting culture and urge? What is morality? Is it possible to achieve a complete moral society?


Why is this story motivational for the pupils?

Given that this is an allegorical novel, the story can be interpreted at several levels and students can learn that reading can never be completed. They will be motivated to read the text again or to look at the movie adaptation to re-discover the novel subtext.


Is there a historical, political, multi/inter cultural, migrant or similar context recognised in this book/story? If yes, indicate it briefly.

Golding depicts a truly scary picture of the decline of a small society. Novel can be seen in the context of multiculturalism and how to achieve consensus and coexistence between individuals in these circumstances.


Is there a principle of inclusion reflected in this book/story and does it promote understanding of cultural diversities and heritage? Briefly indicate.

In the desert island there are boys (interesting, no girls)! of different ages, education, physical and other differences, the novel can be interpreted in that context as well.

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