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Symbolic Emblems in Lord of the Flies

            Symbolic emblems are a big part of Lord of the Flies and are very important to the story. There are many symbolic images throughout the book, which are taken very seriously by the boys.
             Foremost among these is the Conch. A symbol of order and democracy, the conch is a vital part of the story in many ways.
             Initially, it brings together the survivors on the island. It creates order in that it gives "the floor", as such, to the person who wishes to talk and prevents them from being interrupted. The Conch forces the boys to give respect even to the least personable and charismatic of the boys. It calls them together at first, first establishes Ralph as the leader and Piggy as "the brains", in that it gives them power as they were the ones that discovered and used the Conch and brought everyone together.
             As the book continues, the Conch loses its magic, to some extent. The Conch becomes less and less powerful and gets less and less respect until finally, when Jack and his followers split from the group, there is a scene by the rocks, before Piggy is killed. Holding the Conch, he talks about the importance of order and democracy. The boulder is thrown, Piggy is killed and the Conch "exploded into a thousand white fragments and ceased to exist". Jack then declares, "See? See? That's what you"ll get! I meant that! There isn't a tribe for you anymore! The conch is gone . I"m Chief!". After this declaration, all semblance of democracy disappears, Ralph loses all power and Jack begins to rule with his version of order, through fear.
             Another important symbol in the book is the Fire. The fire is important to the story from the moment they arrive and then eventually, in a different form allows them to be rescued.
             The fire represents home, warmth and security both for the older boys and the "little "uns" and plays an important role in the story.
             When they first arrive on the island, the fire is an idea propagated by piggy and quickly seized upon by the mob.

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