Are the boys in Lord of the Flies evil? (Answer)

Are the boys in Lord of the Flies evil

William Golding’s allegorical novel “Lord of the Flies” explores the theme of human nature and the potential for evil to exist in all individuals. The story follows a group of British boys who are stranded on an uninhabited island and forced to create a society from scratch. As the young boys struggle to maintain order, violence and savagery begin to emerge, leading many to question the nature of the boys and whether they are inherently evil. So are the boys in Lord of the Flies evil?

Whether the boys in “Lord of the Flies” are evil has been the subject of much debate and discussion among literary critics and scholars. In this article, we will examine the actions and behavior of the characters in the novel and analyze whether they can be considered evil or if their actions result from the circumstances they find themselves in.

Are the boys in Lord of the Flies evil? (Answered)

The question of whether the boys in William Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” can be considered evil is a complex one that has been debated by scholars and readers alike. While the boys in the novel come from a civilized background, it is only a short time before their inner savagery takes over and drives events forward. What began as a group of playful schoolboys quickly devolves into a violent and destructive society. But are the boys in Lord of the Flies evil?

The boys in “Lord of the Flies” are not innately evil. Instead, their behavior is influenced by their environment and the lack of adult supervision. As they struggle to survive on the deserted island, they revert to more primitive and savage behavior. Fear, peer pressure, and the desire for power and control further encourage this behavior. 

One of the key themes in the novel is the idea that evil is not something that exists solely in individuals but rather is a result of social and environmental factors. The boys on the island, who were once innocent and well-behaved, are influenced by the lack of structure and authority and begin acting in cruel and violent ways.

The concept of evil in “Lord of the Flies” can also be seen in the character of Jack, who becomes the leader of the hunters and represents the epitome of savagery and violence. Jack’s ambition for power and control leads him to take cruel and brutal actions, ultimately resulting in the death of one of his peers.

Who was evil in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, there is no one character who can be considered purely evil. The novel shows how the boys’ actions and behaviors are influenced by their environment and their own personal struggles. Some characters, such as Jack, exhibit more aggressive and violent tendencies, while others, such as Ralph, try to maintain order and fairness on the island. However, even Ralph makes mistakes and succumbs to his own fears. Ultimately, the novel suggests that evil is not inherent in individuals but rather a product of societal influences and circumstances.

What are some examples of the boys being evil in Lord of the Flies?

There are several examples of the boys being evil in Lord of the Flies:

1. The killing of pigs: The boys take pleasure in hunting and killing pigs, and become even more savage as time passes.

2. The death of Simon: In a frenzy of violence, the boys kill Simon, mistaking him for the beast.

3. The murder of Piggy: In a brutal act of savagery, Roger kills Piggy by pushing a boulder on him.

4. The torture of Samneric: Jack’s tribe tortures Samneric, tying them up and forcing them to join their tribe.

5. The destruction of the island: The boys start fires that destroy much of the island, showing their disregard for nature and their environment.

All these acts demonstrate how power can corrupt even young children and how evil can manifest itself when there is no order or authority to control it.

Who turns bad in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, many of the boys on the island gradually turn bad as they succumb to their primal instincts and the allure of power. However, some characters stand out as particularly corrupt or evil. One such character is Jack, who becomes increasingly savage and violent as he gains followers and establishes himself as a leader. Another character who turns bad is Roger, who starts off as a quiet and obedient follower but eventually becomes a sadistic torturer and murderer.

Are humans good or evil in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, William Golding presents a bleak view of human nature. He suggests that humans are naturally evil and prone to violence and destruction. The novel shows how a group of young boys stranded on an island gradually descend into savagery as they struggle to survive without any adult supervision or guidance.

Throughout the book, the boys’ innate sense of morality gradually erodes as they give in to their primal instincts. They form factions, engage in violence, and even resort to murder. This descent into barbarism suggests that humans are inherently evil and that our civilization is only a thin veneer hiding our true nature.

Overall, Golding’s novel strongly suggests that humans are not inherently good but rather have the potential for great evil. The boys’ actions on the island demonstrate how easily we can be corrupted by power, fear, and other primal urges. Thus, Lord of the Flies serves as a warning against our darker impulses and the dangers of unchecked aggression and violence.


In conclusion, the question of whether the boys in “Lord of the Flies” are evil is a complex and nuanced one. While their actions are violent and destructive, they are not inherently evil. Instead, their behavior results from the influence of their environment and the lack of adult supervision. The novel serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of mob mentality and the role that social and environmental factors play in shaping our behavior.

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