Who becomes the leader of the group? How/why does this happen?
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Ralph becomes the leader of the group by vote.
Golding idealizes Ralph from the beginning, lavishing praise on his physical beauty. In the island sun he immediately achieves a golden hue, a physical manifestation of his winning charisma. Ralph's value is not intellectual; importantly, he behaves somewhat childishly in his first encounter with Piggy. Still, Golding suggests that Ralph has a gravity and maturity beyond his years. He is a natural leader, a quality that the other boys immediately recognize when they vote him leader. The vote for chief establishes a conflict between the different values espoused by Jack and Ralph. Jack assumes that he should assume the role automatically, while Ralph, who is reluctant to accept leadership, achieves it by vote. Ralph therefore comes to represent a democratic ethos.