In order to make the reader involved with Lord Of The Flies, William Golding must first create interesting characters, who should be as original as possible to give the novel its own fascinating twist. The first and possibly most effective and noticeable method of enforcing the reader with an interest for his characters, is Golding’s use of contrast between the main characters, Ralph and Piggy. In producing these contrasts Golding is also challenging the social stereotypes of his time.
He has formed Ralph as, “a well brought up”, respectable handsome, young boy who attends public school and articulates good English, his father is a commander in the Navy. From this information received via Ralph early on in the book, we unwittingly stereotype that Ralph, as he is wealthier than Piggy therefore should be politer, more courteous and far more considerate. However, Golding immediately corrects this, in order for the true tactless Ralph to be is revealed, luring the reader further into the depth complex of the boy’s personalities that shall later determine their fate on the island.
This is extremely effective in shocking the reader and making them interested in the character as the unexpected alteration of Ralph’s personality, makes the reader curious as to why he should differ in such a way from his stereotype, “Sucks to your Auntie! “. We soon learn that Piggy, has had a less respectable childhood, his mother and father are dead and lives with his Auntie who owns a sweet shop. Piggy is smaller fatter and does not always speak good English, “What’s yer name”.
Comparing the two characters on the basis of their upbringings we do not expect for Piggy to be the more intelligent, organized and have the most common sense of the pair, however Golding manages to astound us once again with Piggy’s common sense and realism, “They’re all dead, said piggy, an this is an island. Nobody don’t know were here. You’re dad don’t know, nobody don’t know-“. Piggy also possesses a fantastic skill with organization by calling together a meeting on the island to establish the best way to go about staying alive, while Ralph is lightheartedly exercising his sense of freedom.
Although the obvious facts show that Piggy should defiantly be in power, as soon as he is introduced to the story he is dismissed of importance, because of his upbringing, appearance and use of vocabulary, by the use of Piggy not being important enough to have an actual first name, but instead a hurtful nickname started by Ralph. Ralph automatically sees himself as being more important than piggy which is shown in the story by Ralph ordering piggy and also mocking him, “Get my clothes, muttered Ralph, Along there.
Golding also provided contrasts soon after between Ralph and Jack, both of whom wanted the same goal, leadership, with very different aims. In making the first characters introduced to the story very different from each other in every feasible manner William Golding has already made the reader more interested because of the natural curiosity the reader would have about how two completely different people with different ideas could survive in a less than ordinary society. Another method of making the characters more interesting used by Golding is creating them with different accents and appearances, for example
Piggy occasionally mispronounces words. A more ordinary, though very effective method Golding used to make the characters more interesting was his very detailed description of each individual. He imprints a strong picture of the characters appearance and personality into the mind, as he describes each of their qualities so effectively, that you have a strong feeling for the character, even before they have spoken, “Inside the floating cloak he was tall, thin, and boney: and his hair was red beneath the black cap. His face was crumpled and freckled and ugly without silliness.
Out of this face starred two light blue eyes, frustrated now, and turning, or ready to turn, to anger”. From this description we do not like this boy because he appears angry and hateful and as the eyes are the most described we focus on his eyes and follow the picture Golding is drawing together in our heads as we can almost visualize him. Golding also introduces the characters one by one so that each group or person can have a detailed description and the important characters enrolments in the story are always a surprise.
For example when Ralph was exploring and piggy cam out of the bushes, which I believe is for dramatic emphasis, he also introduces them, though simply walking into a scene, doing something specific often typical to their behavior, “The child appeared among the palms, about a hundred yards along the beach. He was a boy of perhaps six years, sturdy and fair, his clothes ton, his face covered with a sticky mess of fruit.
His trousers had been lowered for an obvious purpose and had only been pulled back half-way”. He forms characters that are different and in groups, for example the tribe like choir group, by later splitting the characters up to create conflict. He manages to craft two identical twin characters into on, to show that they do everything together and are like one person, by the use of referring to Sam and Eric as Samanderic, ideas like this are effective, original and defiantly stay in ones mind.
Golding uses many techniques to make the observer interested in his characters so that the plot can be is more interesting, and even effectivly complicated. He keeps the reader constantly on guard, as he is always crafting new, “twists”, and complications into the story. Golding’s characters appear both complete and yet with a hint of mystery, as the reader is always,” in the dark”, about how they will react next.