Lord of the Flies

The Symbolic Importance of the Killing of the Sow 10th Grade

In the novel, ‘Lord of the Flies’, the killing of the sow is a pivotal moment whereby the boys reach a point of no return; they have lost themselves completely and are now so immersed in savagery that there is no turning back. Golding emphasises this by ensuring this moment is symbolic in many ways. In this essay I will analyse and explore the linguistic techniques and structural elements of Golding’s writing to determine the ways in which Golding makes this such a symbolic moment in the novel.

Golding demonstrates the sheer frustration amongst the boys that is finally surfacing as a result of such a long period on the island. Golding describes how the sow was ‘in deep maternal bliss’, the power abstract noun ‘bliss’ creating a moment that is sacred and beautiful. However, this is quickly disrupted as the boys attack her, and Golding describes how they were ‘wedded in lust’. Whilst the lexis ‘lust’ has sinister and indeed immoral connotations, it seems the boys’ bloodlust at this point is a silent cry for help - it illustrates the boys' frustration with being on the island alone, without any parental guidance or control. Golding’s choice of a sow as the victim of the boy’s hunt is deliberate and significant; the sow had been...

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