Piggy in Lord of the Flies

Some notes from my English teacher - I found them very helpful!! 

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  • Created on: 04-06-11 13:08
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Piggy's role in Lord of the Flies
Lord of the Flies
Piggy is clearly a clever boy, but he is a victim too. How does the
writer use him in the novel?
Jack's aggressive bullying of him from the start shows the reader at
the beginning how really unpleasant Jack can be.
Ralph's betrayal of Piggy's nickname at the very start, purely to
amuse the crowd and ally himself with Jack, is one of the worst
things he ever does. Golding uses the incident to show Ralph's
immaturity at the start of the novel and as a measure of how far he
has to travel, morally: the novel ends with him crying in grief for the
true, wise friend that is Piggy. Piggy never does escape his
nickname and it serves as a constant reminder to Ralph that you
have to think about the consequences of your actions and that some
things can never be taken back. Luckily it doesn't seem to bother
Piggy for very long!
Piggy always recognises Jack as a real threat to his personal safety,
whereas for a long time Ralph doesn't realise how bad Jack is.
Thus suspense is created for readers.
Piggy follows the pattern Golding uses throughout the novel:
everyone and everything is always partly good and partly bad
nothing is black or white everything is more complex than it at first
appears. Piggy has a lot of strengths (intelligence loyalty logical
thinking regard for truth respect for order and civilisation focus
courage in standing up for beliefs) but his weaknesses are both
superficial and more serious: physical unattractiveness, physical
weaknesses, inferior class, poorer background, different clothes are
not his fault. However, he could do something about physical
laziness selfishness insensitivity and poor social skills tendency to
be pedantic and boring selfrighteousness.
Golding uses this mixture of good and bad to ironic effect: like
Simon, Piggy has the ability to stop the boys sliding into chaos and
barbarism and hasten their chances of rescue, if only they would
listen to him. But because they let themselves be blinded by his
differences/ weaknesses, they don't see the value of what he has to
offer. Eventually, as with Simon, his differences lead to his death.
The group cannot accommodate his individuality. This reflects

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Piggy's role in Lord of the Flies
Golding's larger message about humanity: people are too shallow
to see past unattractive exteriors people cannot distinguish the
trivial from the valuable people are often incapable of recognising
what is valuable if it is offered to them in an unfamiliar guise people
cannot cope with difference, and those who don't fit society's
mould will be at best excluded and at the worst, destroyed.
Golding is interested in the idea of what makes a good leader.…read more

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Piggy's role in Lord of the Flies
o Roger is the torturer the executioner the "heavy" the dark
threat the ultimate nightmare whom everyone is frightened of.
He is the iron fist in the iron glove. He is the army.…read more

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Piggy's role in Lord of the Flies
achieving truly heroic status. Like Jesus and St Paul, we see the
most devoted disciple failing the hero at the moment of crisis.
Piggy's death strongly contrasts with Simon's (it is described
matteroffactly and in gruesome detail it is ugly and brutal and
clear. His body is smashed and disappears down into a hungry sea.…read more


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