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 their influence form a major subtext of Lord of the Flies, with the central themes addressed in an essay by American literary critic Harold Bloom. The name "Lord of the Flies" is a literal translation of Beelzebub, from 2 Kings 1:2–3, 6, 16.
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