Name Period _____ English II--Lord of the Flies Reading Guide

Name ___________________________
English II--Lord of the Flies Reading Guide
Period _____
Author: William Golding
Genre: Fiction
Motifs: Savagery, Fear, Order (or lack thereof), Society, Loss of Innocence, Isolation, Rituals,
the Conch, Survival, Inhumanity
Additional Information: This novel is an allegory; while reading, examine how different
characters and ideas represent other concepts that lie outside of the work.
Questions to consider while reading the novel
How does society fall apart without order?
How does fear fuel the actions of people?
What causes the loss of morality? What causes people to act inhumanely?
How is this novel an example of the inherent evil in mankind?
The fear of the unknown may be a powerful force
The struggle between order and chaos (the fall of civilized behavior in society)
The defects of society may be traced back to the defects of human nature
Directions: Answer each of the prompts below on a separate sheet of paper. For each answer,
cite the page number where you found the necessary information for your answer.
Chapter 1
1. Write a description of the following characters: Piggy, Ralph, Jack, Samneric, Simon.
2. Find an instance where the narrator describes the scene using imagery. Why does the
narrator use so much imagery in his descriptions of the island?
3. What is the setting of the novel?
4. How did the boys arrive on the island?
5. How do the boys try to establish order?
6. What does the conch represent at this point in the novel?
7. Why do the boys refuse to kill the pig at the start of the chapter?
Chapter 2
1. How do the boys try to establish order in this chapter?
2. What do the boys try to do to communicate with those outside of the island?
3. What is the purpose of using Piggy’s glasses in this section of the work? How might the
glasses be symbolic?
4. What conflicts occur during this chapter? Explain.
5. What happens to the boys with the mulberry birthmark?
Chapter 3
1. Identify an external conflict and highlight a specific situation that highlights this conflict.
2. How is fear running rampant on the island?
3. Which character seems to be isolated from the other boys? Find one specific example
that shows his isolation. Cite the page number as well.
Chapter 4
1. At this point in the novel, the boys adhere to rules and order. Apply this statement to
Roger’s actions in this chapter.
2. Why does Jack put on the mask? What could this action represent?
3. What are some conflicts that occur during this chapter? How do these examples show a
loss of order on the island?
4. Select one of the themes from the beginning of this reading guide. Explain one event that
shows the development of the theme in this chapter.
Chapter 5
1. Is Ralph a good leader? What are some of his strengths? What are some of his
shortcoming as a leader?
2. How does fear creep into the minds of characters on the island? What effect does this
have on the mood of the story?
3. How is the society that the boys have created on the island disintegrating during this
section of the reading?
4. Examine the following statement: “What I mean is…maybe it’s only us.” What does
Simon mean when he makes this statement? What does this reveal about Simon?
5. At this point in the novel, what is the beast?
Chapter 6
1. What is the figure that arrives on the island? How does this add to the already heightened
fear of the boys on the island?
2. How do the boys respond to the threat of the beast?
3. How does this section show the breakdown of civilized behavior?
4. Which character states that he does not believe in the beast? How does this differ from
the rest of the boys?
5. Why do the boys roll rocks at the end of the chapter? What does this show about their
Chapter 7
1. Some of the boys reenact the near killing of the boar. Who pretends to be the boar?
What do the other boys do to this character? What does this reveal about the mental
status of the boys?
2. Why is the time of day important in the search for the beast?
3. Who went through the forest alone to tell Piggy that the group searching for the beast
would not be back until after dark? Review the list of motifs from the first page of the
packet—which one might fit this situation? Explain.
4. Who climbed the mountain to look for the beast? What do they find?
Chapter 8
1. How do the boys characterize the beast? Do you believe the beast really looks like their
descriptions? Explain.
2. How does Jack gain power?
3. Piggy states, “I expect they’ve [littleuns] gone. I expect they won’t play either.” Do the
boys understand the danger of their situation? Explain.
4. What do the boys present to the beast? Why do they do this?
5. How do the boys act savagely in this section?
6. What is the Lord of the Flies? Literally, what is the Lord of the Flies? What could it
represent symbolically?
7. Describe some conflicts that occur in this chapter between the tribes of Jack and Ralph.
8. What are some problems that occur now that the group is split in two?
9. What does Simon realize about the Lord of the Flies?
Chapter 9
1. After Simon awakes, what does he find tangled in the trees? Why is this an important
thing to notice?
2. Interpret the following statement: “The beast was harmless and horrible.”
3. Describe Jack as a leader. What is his leadership style? How does he achieve power?
How does he use his power?
4. How does “mob rule” take over in this chapter?
5. What are two events that support the theme “the fall of civilized behavior in society”?
Chapter 10
1. Examine the boys’ reactions to the death of Simon. How do the boys take responsibility
for Simon’s death? In particular, examine Piggy’s and Ralph’s reactions.
2. Select one theme, state an event that supports the theme, and explain how this event
supports the theme.
3. Select an event from this chapter that demonstrates how Jack abuses his power.
4. Characterize Jack’s tribe. What do they do to Ralph and Piggy?
5. Piggy’s specs and the fire are symbols. What do they represent? What problems do
Piggy and Ralph have after the attack, with respect to the fire and the specs?
Chapter 11
1. How are Ralph and Piggy losing hope?
2. Ralph states, “We won’t be painted because we aren’t savages.” Interpret this statement,
and share how this statement supports a theme within the work.
3. What does the paint hide about the boys’ personalities?
4. What savage behaviors occur during this chapter?
5. Examine the section of the chapter where Piggy speaks to the group. What options are
presented by Piggy? What does the reaction of the audience show about the boys’
mindset about being rescued?
6. Think back to earlier in the novel when Roger was throwing rocks at the littleuns. How
could that event have been an instance of foreshadowing for what occurs in this chapter?
7. What does the breaking of the conch symbolize?
Chapter 12
1. How is fire used in this chapter? Explain how this differs from earlier in the novel.
2. Eric tells Ralph, “never mind what’s sense. That’s gone--.” What does this show about
the mindset of the characters on the island?
3. Why does Jack have a stick that is sharpened on both ends?
4. What is ironic about the naval officer’s statement, “Fun and games”?
End of Novel Questions
1. What is your reaction to the novel? What did you like? What didn’t you enjoy about the
2. What were the original goals for the boys? Were the boys successful? How and why did
the goals change?
3. Connect ideas from this work with another story that you have read. Select at least two
specific events from each work and discuss how the events connect the works of
4. What conclusions can you draw from the end of this novel? What lessons could be
5. Complete the chart below:
How does society fall
apart without order?
How does fear fuel the
actions of people?
What does it mean to act
morally? What causes
the loss of morality?
What causes people to
act inhumanely?
Are people inherently
evil? Explain.
Evidence from the novel that answers the
Evidence from today’s world that answers
the question (Personal Examples)