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The Lord of the Flies by William Golding

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At the end of the book, Golding uses the literary element of perspective. The point-of-view changes to how an outsider would view the boys. Perspective is the way in which one sees something. Golding uses this idea throughout the last few pages of the book to display the boys getting rescued and how they seem to look to the officers. The innocence of the boys are shown and how disheveled they all look. Golding uses this style to portray that the people on that island were just little boys, but they had gone through so much and from the outside perspective of the officers, they had no idea what the boys had endured.

Instead of Golding writing from the perspective of the boys on the island, he transitions the point-of-view to the officers or an outsider to depict how the boys would look in real life. When the officer first takes notice of Ralph’s appearance, he describes him as a scarecrow because he is so thin. “The officer inspected the little scarecrow in front of him. The kid needed a bath, a haircut, and a good deal of ointment” (201). The officer also notices that Ralph needs a bath and a haircut probably because he has been on the island for a long time. Although, Golding never says how long the boys are on the island, it seems as though they have been stranded for awhile. Also the officer mentions how Ralph could use some ointment displaying that Ralph might have scars and slashes from his fight with Jack’s tribe and the fire.

The officer mainly talks to Ralph at the end, but when Jack makes a move to go forward, the officer takes notice in him as well. The officer describes him as, “A little boy who wore the remains of an extraordinary black cap on his red hair and who carried the remains of a pair of spectacles at his waist, started forward, then changed his mind and stood still” (201).  This is what Jack looks like after the fire. This description of him creates an image that makes him seem less than savage. Throughout the story, Jack is a vicious human being taken over by the controls of human nature and mankind. The police officer points out the “little boy…” and even describes his cap as being “extraordinary.” These descriptions add to the fact that Jack is still an innocent adolescent. Although, he acts more grown-up (violent) on the island, the reader forgets that he still is a kid. The boys have experienced the reality of human nature and while the end is abrupt, it does display how each child looks.

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