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Revised Version: Littluns In WIlliam Golding's Lord Of The Flies: Their Significance, Importance And What They Represent - With A Free Essay Review



In any society, there would be a social hierarchy that consists of two basic groups: the leaders and the followers. In "Lord of the Flies" by William Golding, the littluns are the latter. They can be seen as a depiction of the general public which help shape the type of society which they are in.

The littluns empowers their chosen leader by giving him a high social status. By electing Ralph as chief, he's able to silence all the other boys during assembly and was able to suppress Jack's aggression at first. Ralph is aware about his power and places the littluns as his source of power by saying "You voted me for Chief, now you do what I say!". Ralph was the authority.

Littluns, like the common people, gives justification for their leaders' actions and words. Ralph's quote in the previous paragraph can be treated also as a justification for his orders. Another demonstration is the word "we" whenever Ralph and Jack are trying to promote the different ideologies that they think the littluns need, such as "we need shelters!" and "we need meat!". Both of them tries to get reassurance from the littluns in order to prove the other wrong like in a politicians' debate. Ralph's "Do you all want to be rescued?" and Jack's "Am I a hunter or not?" to the littluns can be seen as a bargain for power.

By choosing their leader according to their human emotions, the littluns decides which ideology would be the dominant one on the island. At first, when the littluns were eager to go home.They supported Ralph as chief and his idea of making a signal fire. the signal fire was the first priority on the island: they had fire watches and "life became a race with the fire". However, as the littluns become less connected with civilization as their period of time on the island extends, they become more fearful and brings up the idea of a possible "beastie". This created a demand for a protective leader which Jack quickly shapes himself into. As Jack gains more and more support, hunting was the predominant activity on the island and the fire was ignored. A new dynasty was established on the island.

Therefore, "Lord of the Flies" can be seen as a political allusion in which the common people, as represented by the littluns, are able to choose their leaders and empowers them through justification and their human irrationality gives rise to different ideologies on the island.

Thanks for the detailed review! I just want to ask, how much will this essay be graded out of 20? Also, I'm planning to write a revised version of this essay. Are there any types of introductions that are suitable for English Literature? Thanks!

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ESSAY REVIEW

Thanks for sharing your revision with us. As I was reviewing your earlier draft and my response to it, I noticed the question you left then in the comments which I had overlooked. You ask about "types of introductions that are suitable for English literature" essays. (You also ask about how the essay would be graded out of 20, but I'm afraid I've no idea about that because criteria vary from school to school and year to year.) Now your essay doesn't include any reference to other critical works, and perhaps such reference is beyond the scope of your assignment, but introductions to essays of literary criticism often begin with a brief overview of what other critics have said about the literary work. That's how professors often do it in any case. I did mention in my previous review that your essay offered an alternative to one way in which the novel Lord of the Flies is sometimes read. An introduction might mention this other way in which the novel is read, and then explain that your essay will make a different argument (literary criticism is all about making different arguments!). Explaining the argument that your essay will make is more or the less the same as writing out your thesis. That's the other things introductions typically do. A thesis is a clear statement of the argument and, usually, of the principal reasons to be offered in support of that argument. At present, in this revised draft, your thesis is the third sentence of the first paragraph ("They can be seen as a depiction of the general public ..."). That thesis is not a typical thesis in that it doesn't clarify the full scope of your argument and it doesn't present your reasons (the latter, presenting reasons, is not always necessary for a thesis in a critical essay). The full scope of your argument concerns not only the significance of the littluns, but also how you relate that significance to your interpretation of the novel as a whole. You interpret it as a political allegory (in your conclusion, you say "allusion," but I think you mean allegory). So you could still do some work on your thesis, and on the introduction as a whole. Once you are absolutely certain what your thesis is - i.e., once you are certain precisely what you want to argue - then you can measure the success of each paragraph by how clearly and compellingly it contributes to demonstrating the truth of your argument. (That’s an implicit way of saying that you need to explicitly relate the specific claims being made in each “body” paragraph with the overall purpose (the revised thesis) of your essay.

The essay as a whole, however, is more coherent than was the earlier draft. Now if you want to take that argument further, then the first thing you would need to determine is the purpose of the political allegory that you identify in the novel. If you were writing about Animal Farm, for instance, you wouldn't just say that the novel is a political allegory in which the Pigs become the new leaders and so on. You might say instead that it is a political allegory intended to demonstrate how revolutionary parties become corrupted by the same power whose violent inequities they initially sought to abolish. Well, you'd probably say something more interesting and elaborate than that, but you see what I'm getting at. It's not enough to identify what's going on in the book; you also need to explain its significance. Does the novel explain how one political regime replaces another, for instance? Does it explain how naive idealism is disempowered by violence or barbarism or fear-mongering?

Best, EJ.
Submitted by: dreamyclouds
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