Thesis Statements For Lord Of The Flies On Symbolism

Example of a Symbolism essay on Lord of the Flies about:

William Golding / Lord of the flies / beast / Piggy's glasses / symbol

Essay Topic:

The tragic symbolism of William Golding’s “Lord of the flies”.

Essay Questions:

What is the role of the “best” in terms of the message of the whole novel?

Why does the symbolism of Piggy’s glasses play such an important role in the general symbolism of the “Lord of the flies”?

How do the symbols of the “beast” and the glasses reveal the depth of the social tragedy of the novel?

Thesis Statement:

The symbolism of Piggy’s glasses and the ”beast” are essential for the message of William Golding’s “Lord of the flies”.


Introduction: It is common knowledge that very often the author shares his message with the reader with the help of certain symbols. William Golding’s “Lord of the flies” is not an exception. One of the brightest symbolic aspects of the book is the symbol of Piggy’s spectacles.

As Piggy is described as an intellectually gifted boy as he posses knowledge about different scientific facts nobody remembers or even knows about. His glasses with the help of which the fire is started represent the scientific and intellectual power of the society he has been raised in. He uses the lens of the spectacles and the sun to get fire. Once the glasses are stolen the power is transmitted to Jack – as now he is the only one who can set a fire

Another symbol of William Golding’s “Lord of the flies” is the “beast” all the boys are afraid of. This imaginary “beast” as revealed by Simon is nothing but the “beast” they all have become. The unleashed “the beasts” inside them leaving no place for civilized human relations lead them to becoming a primitive tribe who goes for totemism. They are afraid not of the beast but of themselves, their primitive survival instincts and the consequences the might have for themselves.

The characters themselves also become symbolic as they represent the aspects of the society where Ralph is a decent civilized citizen, who respects the order (the law); Piggy is the science and the intellectual heritage of the society; Simon shows how good people can be; Roger represents the brutality of the society. And all of them reveal how the search for power turns people into “primitive animals”.

The last but not the least symbol of the novel if the “Lord of the flies” after which the novel is named for. “Lord of the flies” is nothing but a head of an owl which becomes an offering for the “beast”. It is this very head the actually “tells” and revels the truth about the “beast” to Simon. It shows the reader that the true devil is the man and not some beast. All of the symbols listed above have an allegoric character and ridicule the society showing what heritage is transmitted for denegation to generation and that this heritage is nothing but social degradation.

Conclusion: All of the symbols listed above are crucial for the message which is delivered in William Golding’s “Lord of the flies” as they reveal the depth of the social tragedy and  its degradation resulting in the bloodlust and ability to kill just to get “a piece of meat”.


A thesis statement is an invaluable part of an essay as it allows the writer to stay focused on the main purpose of the essay. It is a good idea to reread the thesis statement several times to ensure that the emphasis remains. Basically, a thesis statement supports whatever claims the writer may intend to make and it should persuade the reader, once the supporting evidence has been produced, and convince him to agree with the writer's point of view.  

In Lord of The Flies, there are various topics which a writer could focus on, most of which hinge on the civilization versus savagery theme which William Golding portrays so vividly. Each topic could deal with a different aspect, such as the changes in the boys in the absence of "grown-ups;" the fact that Ralph and Piggy work so hard to maintain order, stressing the importance of the conch; the different priorities of Ralph and Jack as they compete for leadership; the importance of "the beast" and how if affects the decision-making; Jack's complete descent into unrestrained evil and also the brutal loss of innocence that completes the story. 

Potential thesis statements, which would appear in the introductory passage, could be:

1)Jack's behavior and Ralph's inexperience cause the complete breakdown of all sense of decency and human compassion.

The main emphasis here could be on how, despite Ralph's best efforts and Piggy's help, Jack is a stronger character than Ralph, questioning everything and gradually breaking down Ralph's position, persuading the others to join his "tribe."

2)The conch represents the only hope the boys have of maintaining order. It is a symbol of democracy and civilization on the island where the boys find themselves.

Jack has little respect for the conch from the beginning and this is seen in his behavior and his treatment of Piggy. Jack uses and abuses the conch, which indicates his lack of respect for authority, and is ultimately responsible for its destruction. It is significant that Piggy dies when the conch is smashed.

3) "The Beast" signifies the unknown to the boys and they are afraid of it to the point of being irrational. Only Simon comes to an understanding of the fear that exists within each person. Jack capitalizes on fear and uses it and violence as a weapon to manipulate the boys in his attempts to be the leader.

Fear is a very real feeling for the boys, once the euphoria of being on a deserted island, with no adult supervision, subsides. The fact that the beast is a figment of the imagination does not make it any less scary. Basic instincts take over when Ralph's leadership style is not sufficient to maintain order and to stop Jack from forcing the boys to accept his "hunter-or-be-hunted approach. 

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