In this essay I am going to discuss what role Jack had on the island. The story was set soon after the 2nd World War and many people were fearful of a ‘Nuclear War’, which is the background of the story, ‘The Lord of the Flies’. The author of the story, William Golding, himself states that the children loose their innocence on the island however does not say whose fault it was. In the main body of this essay I will review Jack and his attitudes and behaviour regarding others on the island. The story itself reflects on society which is shown as the image of the conch. The island itself is described as paradise but starts getting ruined by the children which reflects on issues such as the green house effect, world pollution and the destroying of our planet. Also I will be looking at the differences between Jack and Ralph throughout the story.
Jack has a powerful character and is the ‘boy who controlled them’ showing he is respected for being head choir boy. In the story Jack is shown as a leader from the start but lacks charisma but ‘his eagerness’ positions him into the chiefs place which he feels he should have from the first time round ‘I ought to be chief’. Jack feels he is better than everyone else and states so when he says ‘The conch doesn’t count’ and ‘bollocks to the conch’, throughout the story the conch represents society and by not obeying the rules of the tribe Jack does not obey the laws of society on the island.
The author portrays Jack as ‘face was crumpled and freckled’ which isn’t exactly the type of description for an innocent person. Jack uses clever ways to intimidate Ralph and Piggy ‘Jacks taunt fell powerful’ and ‘Jack took no notice’ however Jack also uses decency to get one over on Ralph ‘Alright I apologise’ showing he is devious. Jack’s character is very aggressive towards others on the island ‘shut up fatty’ and ‘He looked round at them fiercely, daring them to contradict’ to the point which the author shows him as ‘his eyes staring in madness’ showing he is so obsessive and determined that he was going mad. Although Jack’s intentions were corrupt he was revealed by the author as an ambitious person ‘Jacks voice went on, tremulous yet determined, pushing against the uncooperative silence’
Jack is one of the only independent characters in the story and is not afraid to express his opinion ‘he’s like Piggy. He says things like Piggy. He isn’t a proper chief’. I feel out of Jack and Ralph, Jack gains more power and support than Ralph because he used Ralph’s weakness’ against him ‘he’s not a hunter. He’d never have got us meat. He isn’t a prefect and we don’t know anything about him’. Although Jack is very independent he is still a child’ I’m not going to play any longer, not with you’. Jack’s tyrannical behaviour ends in the tribe splitting into two and he takes control of one of the sides’ We’ll hunt. I’m going to be chief’. Jack is also extremely competent not only in means of persuading people ‘to-night we’re having a feast. We’ve killed a pig and we’ve got meat. You can come and eat with us if you like’ to join his tribe but in physical activities such as hunting he uses his surroundings as an advantage ‘he was happy and wore the damp darkness of the forest like his own clothes’
Jack changes for the worst when he makes his own tribe ‘Kill the beast! Cut his throat! Spill his blood! which is a savage manner which even Jack didn’t have at the beginning of the story and demands the respect that he didn’t have at the start ‘the chief has spoken’. Jack uses anything in his power to get what he wants ‘a knee jerked up between his legs and he fell sideways’ demonstrating his power and rebellious ways in a fight at night with Ralph. Jack carried out many malicious acts on the island but seemed to be proud of every one of them even once he executed Piggy ‘see? See? That’s what you’ll get! I meant that! And Jack was clearly responsible for the breakdown of society after he ‘smashed the conch into a thousand pieces’
From the above statement and evidence I conclude that Jack had a large part of the blame for the children losing their innocence. I believe this because it was Jack who broke the main tribe up and caused the break down of society on the island because of his savage behaviour like the murders of Simon and Piggy, causing many of the children to lose their innocence!