Meeting this Thursday! Here are some questions to discuss to get ready for the meeting:
1. How do Ralph and Piggy view Simon‟s death? How does each of them react to it? Why does Ralph
laugh as he says, “I got the conch,” and why does Piggy react so strongly to his laughter? What
explanations do they have for their behavior, and what excuses do they come up with? What do these
reactions show about them and about human nature?
2. What feelings, beliefs, and speculations do Jack's biguns have about what happened the night
before at the feast? Can you explain why they did what they did? Why are they “half-relieved, half-
daunted by the implication of further terrors”? Consider the significance of the quotes below,
especially the second one. What unspoken words complete the first sentence?
“How could we—kill—it?”
Each savage flinched away from his individual memory.
“I expect the beast disguised itself."
3. What signs of stress and fear can we see in Ralph, Piggy, and Samneric‟s behavior in this chapter?
4. Why do you think Roger pushes the rock off the cliff?
5. How is the destruction of the conch symbolically significant?
6. What do Samneric mean when they tell Ralph that Jack has “sharpened a stick at both ends”? What
do you think the reason for Jack‟s hatred is?
7. What foolish method do the boys use to ensure that they find Ralph? What does this decision suggest
about the power of hatred and violence versus the power of reason?
8. Explain the significance of this quotation: “Percival Wemys Madison sought in his head for an
incantation that had faded clean away.”
9. What is ironic about how the boys are saved? What is ironic about the fact that the boys, who have
become savages, are British, and why do you think Golding chose to write about a group of British boys?
Consider what the naval officer says: “I should have thought that a pack of British boys would have
been able to put up a better show than that.”
1. Discuss the deterioration of the “society” on the island. What circumstances, events, and
psychological forces cause this deterioration?
2. Discuss the extensive use of symbolism in the novel. Examples of important symbols are the conch,
the fire, the beast, Piggy's glasses, and the “lord of the flies,” as well as Piggy, Ralph, Simon, and Jack
3. What is your opinion of the novel—is the story convincing? Does it present a realistic vision of human
nature? Have you experienced or observed things that would either support or contradict Golding's
Looking forward to reading/hearing your responses to these!