Lord of the Flies Summary and Analysis of Chapter Seven: Shadows and Tall Trees

The kids continue to take a trip throughout the island to the mountain, and they stop to consume. Ralph notices for how long his hair is and how dirty and dirty he has ended up being. He has actually been following the hunters, and he observes that on this side of the island, which is opposite to the one on which the young boys have actually settled, the view is utterly different. The horizon is a hard, clipped blue, and the ocean crashes against the rocks. He compares the ocean to a thick wall, an impenetrable barrier avoiding the boys’ escape. As Ralph appears to lose hope, Simon reassures him that they will leave the island eventually. Ralph is somewhat skeptical, but Simon responds that his thoughts are just viewpoints. Roger requires Ralph, informing him that they need to continue hunting.

That afternoon, the young boys discover pig droppings. Jack recommends that they hunt the pig in addition to continuing their search for the monster. A boar appears, and the boys set out in pursuit of it. Ralph, who has never ever hunted in the past, is thrilled by the chase and rapidly gets caught up in the adventure. He tosses his spear at a boar. While it only nicks his snout, Ralph is motivated by what he considers his great marksmanship.

Jack is wounded on his left lower arm, apparently by the boar’s tusks. He proudly provides his injury to the crowd, and Simon tells him he need to draw the wound to prevent infection. The hunters enter into a frenzy once more, repeatedly chanting “eliminate the pig.” Caught up in the momentum of their chanting and dancing, they jab at Robert with their spears, initially in jest, and after that with more harmful intent. Scared and hurt, Robert drags himself away from the crowd, now conscious that they are carried away with their video game. Roger and Jack discuss the chanting, and Jack says that someone must dress up as a pig and pretend to knock him over. When Robert states that Jack should get a genuine pig that he can actually kill, Jack replies that they might simply utilize a littlun. The young boys, fascinated by Jack’s strong declaration, laugh and cheer him on. Ralph attempts to remind the kids that they were just playing a video game. He is concerned about the progressively violent, spontaneous habits of the hunters.

As evening falls, the boys begin climbing the mountain once again, and Ralph realizes that they won’t be able to go back to the beach till early morning. He does not wish to leave the littluns alone with Piggy all night. Jack buffoons Ralph for his issue for Piggy. Simon says that he can go back to the beach and notify the group of the hunters’ location. Ralph tells Jack that there is inadequate light to go hunting for pigs, so they must wait until morning. Noticing hostility from Jack, Ralph asks him why he hates him. Jack has no answer.

Though the hunters are worn out and scared, Jack swears that he will go up the mountain to look for the monster. Jack buffoons Ralph for not wanting to increase the mountain, accusing him of hesitating. Jack claims he saw something bulge on the mountain. Because Jack seems for the first time rather afraid, Ralph concurs that they will search for it immediately. The boys see a rock-like hump and something like a primate sitting asleep with its head between its knees. As soon as they see it, the kids run, horrified.


In this chapter, Golding further develops the themes he introduced in “Monster From Air.” The rift in between Jack and Ralph becomes more extreme as Ralph continues to remind Jack of his misguided priorities. The battle in this chapter in between the 2 characters again assumes political overtones, as the two engage in a power struggle for authority over the other kids. The concerns of Ralph and Jack were established in previous chapters: the former focuses on survival and escape while the latter concentrates on hunting and self-gratification. In this chapter Golding analyzes the techniques that each uses to assert his authority. Jack utilizes his bravado to represent his strength and dominance, and he attempts to decrease Ralph in the eyes of the other kids by mocking him for his supposed cowardice. Ralph, on the other hand, is simple and direct. He challenges Jack’s overblown self-confidence by honestly noting that Jack is mistakenly inspired by hatred.

Golding continues to utilize imagery and symbolism to trace the boys’ descent into condition, violence, and amorality. In particular, Golding suggests in this chapter that the line in between the boys and animals is becoming increasingly blurred. The hunters chant and dance, and one of the kids once again pretends to be a pig while the other boys pretend to eliminate him. The parallel in between kid and pig in the routine is an effective dramatization of the implications of the boys’ succumbing to their violent impulses, showing that the children are no better than animals which, like the pig, they too will be compromised to meet the brutal desires of Jack and his hunters.

Characterization in Chapter Seven likewise foreshadows the tragic events to come. In specific, Jack, who is significantly positive as a hunter and leader, suggests that his violent impulses are now directed at the other children along with at the pigs on the island. Jack’s joke that the group should kill a littlun in location of a pig shows a blatant neglect for human life and clearly acknowledges that he appreciates violence for its own sake. His joke also signifies the waning of his conscience as the young boys continue to exist in the lack of adult society and its rules. Jack, who formerly required to prepare himself to eliminate a pig, indicates that he is now most likely capable of killing people without regret.

As Ralph faces the challenge of tracking and hunting the monster, physical tasks that are unfamiliar to him as the political leader of the young boys, he demonstrates the unsafe appeal of aggressive and impulsive habits such as Jack’s. Golding tracks Ralph’s short sympathy with Jack’s mindset to suggest that even the most civilized people are susceptible to groupthink and the pressures of the Id, which tends towards destruction and self-gratification. The chapter begins with Ralph expressing disgust over his appearance, which again suggests his natural disinclination towards savagery. Yet, like Jack, Ralph feels exhilarated throughout the hunt and begins to understand the primal appeal of killing pigs. It is Jack’s decision to continue the hunt in darkness, which Ralph appropriately acknowledges as ill-informed, that lastly advises Ralph of the important foolishness of Jack’s mindset. By showing Ralph’s character as threatened however not subsumed by Jack’s will, Golding suggests that the human impulse towards savagery, which is both strong and natural, can however be conquered by reason and intelligence.

While Golding’s characterization of Jack and his hunters plans to warn the reader about the damaging impulses that reside inside all people, it is very important to keep in mind the historic biases at work in this depiction of the boys’ searching rituals. The boys chant and dance around in circles, whipping themselves up into a “craze” that pushes them to the verge of real murder. They represent or are ending up being “savages,” which in Golding’s time reminded readers of the native individuals of the Americas and Africa. This stereotype tended to associate these peoples with a really restricted and barbaric culture, stopping working to appreciate the intricate culture that events such as routine dances expressed. A more charitable view of Jack’s brand-new warrior culture, say from an anthropologist’s perspective, would not worry the dehumanization of the war-dance even their natural human reaction to the tough conditions on the island, a reaction that after all can produce the meat that the kids require.

Nature is also of important significance in this chapter. As the boys move further from the camp into the uncharted recesses of the forest and mountain locations, they compete with the powerful forces of the natural world, which is untamed and indifferent to the boys’ issues. The focus on the indifference of nature in this chapter is significant in a number of ways. Initially, it recommends the continuing dehumanization of the young boys as they stay cut off from the bigger world and without effective social company. Their development from the semi-humanized beach, with its shelters and sandcastles, to the wild forest and mountain locations, mirrors their descent into complete savagery. The chapter’s beginning, in which Ralph compares the ocean to an impenetrable wall, likewise recommends the extent to which nature stays the young boys’ most powerful antagonist. Ralph’s pessimistic observations foreshadow the following chapters, in which Simon discovers that the “monster” is really a dead body, whose presence on the island can be explained logically. It was the darkness of the night that avoided the boys from recognizing the real nature of the animal of the mountaintop. Throughout the novel, the natural world frustrates and threatens the kids’ understanding of their circumstance and their relationships with one another. Ralph’s sense of defeat in the face of the ocean in this chapter hence suggests that he is starting to register the power of nature and the part it plays in their struggle for rescue and self-government.

The conclusion of the chapter, with the kids’ collective misrecognition of the dead parachutist as a sinister monster, highlights the power of human nature to fear the unknown and magnify its value. The boys compare the figure on the mountaintop to a great ape. The primate is a common sign for early man and man’s origins as an animal types. The kids acknowledge the ape-like creature as a monster, a moment that underscores the monstrous capacity of humanity at its most primitive and base. The parachutist, whose arrival on the island inaugurates a series of events that cause finish anarchy and bloodshed, hence links together evil, nature, and humanity in a single symbol. The haste with which the kids decide the dead body is a “monster” suggests not just the infectiousness of hysterical thinking among the kids, however likewise the level to which the beast is a forecast of their worry of their own savagery and violence.

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