What is the Beastie in Lord of the Flies? (Symbol Analysis)

What is the Beastie in Lord of the Flies

What is the beastie in Lord of the Flies? This question delves into the heart of William Golding’s iconic novel, exploring one of its most haunting and enigmatic elements. The imaginary beastie that frightens all the boys on the deserted island is not merely a figment of their imagination; it serves as a powerful symbol, representing the primal instinct of savagery that resides within every human being. As we delve into the depths of this literary masterpiece, we will unravel the significance and meaning behind this mysterious creature, shedding light on its role in revealing humanity’s darker impulses and exploring the complex dynamics of civilization versus chaos.

What is the Beastie in Lord of the Flies? (Answer)

What is the beastie in Lord of the Flies? This question has puzzled readers for decades as they attempt to unravel the symbolic meaning behind this imaginary creature that haunts the group of young boys stranded on a deserted island. In William Golding’s classic novel, Lord of the Flies, the beastie represents more than just a physical threat; it embodies the primal instinct of savagery that resides within every human being.

The boys fear their new surroundings from the moment the boys crash-land on the uninhabited island. As night falls and darkness engulfs them, whispers about a mysterious and terrifying beastie circulate among them. At first, they dismiss it as a mere figment of their imagination or a product of their collective fear. However, as time passes and their primitive instincts start to take hold, this fear becomes tangible and all-consuming. Even Ralph and Piggy have a fear of the beast.

The beastie serves as an external manifestation of the inner darkness lurking within each boy. It represents their inherent capacity for evil and violence when removed from society’s constraints. In essence, it symbolizes humanity’s innate savagery that lies dormant beneath our civilized veneer.

Throughout Lord of the Flies, we witness how this perceived threat intensifies and drives some boys to madness. The fear of the beastie fuels their descent into chaos and barbarism. It reveals an alarming truth: given certain circumstances and devoid of societal structures, humans are capable of unspeakable acts.

As tensions rise among the boys, so does their belief in the existence and power of the beastie. They begin attributing supernatural qualities to it, building it up into something larger than life itself. This construction illustrates how fear can distort reality and manipulate our perceptions.

However, by attributing these fears to an external entity like a mythical creature rather than acknowledging its inner nature, Golding suggests that humans often try to disassociate themselves from their own dark impulses. The boys project their fears onto the beastie, refusing to recognize that it represents the darkness within their own souls.

The novel’s climax occurs when Simon, one of the boys, stumbles upon the truth about the beastie. In a moment of clarity and revelation, he realizes that there is no physical creature haunting them. Instead, it is their own inner savagery that they should fear. Unfortunately, his attempt to share this insight with his fellow boys ends in tragedy.

What is the beast? Why is it called Lord of the Flies?

The “beast” in Lord of the Flies represents the inherent darkness and savagery that exists within every individual. It is a symbol of the boys’ own fears and primal instincts. The term “Lord of the Flies” refers to the pig’s head that is placed on a stick as an offering to the beast by Jack’s tribe. The decaying head attracts flies, which gives it a grotesque appearance and becomes a visual representation of evil and decay. Hence, it is called “Lord of the Flies” as a metaphor for the corrupting power of fear and violence over humanity.

What do you think the beastie represents?

In Lord of the Flies, the beastie represents the primal and savage instincts that exist within all human beings. It symbolizes the fear and darkness that resides in their hearts, manifesting as an external force that holds power over them. The boys’ belief in the existence of the beastie reflects their descent into savagery and their loss of civilization as they project their own inner fears onto a mythical creature. Ultimately, it serves as a reminder of the inherent evil that can emerge when societal norms are stripped away.

How is the beast described in Lord of the Flies?

In Lord of the Flies, the beast is described as a physical manifestation in the form of a pig head on a stick. This grotesque image symbolizes the dark side of human nature that resides within each character on the island. It represents their inner fears, desires, and descent into darkness as they succumb to their primitive instincts and lose touch with civilization. The pig’s head, known as “The Lord of the Flies,” becomes a haunting presence throughout the novel, reminding the boys of their own capacity for evil and their growing savagery.

What does Ralph say about the beast in Chapter 2?

In Chapter 2 of Lord of the Flies, Ralph says, “Something he had not known was there rose in him and compelled him to make the point, loudly and again. ‘But I tell you there isn’t a beast!'”. Despite feeling an unspoken fear rising within him, he forcefully insists to the other boys that there is no such creature on the island.

What chapter is the beast introduced in Lord of the Flies?

The beast is introduced in Chapter Eight of Lord of the Flies when Simon encounters the pig’s head on a stick, which has been named “The Lord of the Flies.” This grotesque and decaying object symbolizes the evil and savagery that resides within the boys on the island.

Is the beast in Lord of the Flies a snake?

No, the beast in Lord of the Flies is not a snake. The snake reference occurs in Chapter 2 when one of the littluns has a nightmare with another boy telling the group, “He says he saw the beastie, the snake-thing, and will it come back tonight?”. While imaginary, this dream is symbolic of the serpent in the Garden of Eden that tempted Eve. The real beast represents their fears and the darkness within themselves, rather than being a literal creature on the island.


In conclusion, the beastie in Lord of the Flies symbolizes the primal instinct of savagery embedded within every human being. It represents our capacity for evil and violence when removed from societal constraints. By projecting their fears onto an external entity, the boys on the island fail to acknowledge their own darkness. Ultimately, Golding’s masterpiece serves as a cautionary tale about human nature and reminds us that we must confront our inner beastie if we are to maintain civilization and preserve our humanity.

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