In this classic novel, Lord of the Flies, author William Golding uses many elements of symbolism. Symbolism can represent a person, place or thing, used to portray something beyond itself. Symbolism means the art or practice of using symbols, especially by investing things with a symbolic meaning or by expressing the invisible or intangible by means of visible or sensuous representations. In other words, symbolism means the discussing or explaining a broader, more general topic by linking it symbolically with a specific event in a literary work. This book has several examples of symbolism, but the ones that stand out the most are: The representation of the littluns as the "people" and Jack as the "government", Simon's conversation with the Lord of the Flies, and the breaking of Piggy's glasses, also called spectacles. The outstanding use of symbolism in the book is one of the contributing factors to the profoundness of Lord of the Flies.
One subtle, but important example of symbolization in this novel is the representation of the littluns as the "people" and Jack as the "government". By using this symbolization, the author tries to express what he feels is wrong with modern government. This symbolization is shown in the book by a statement made by Jack. "What about the littluns?" "Sucks to the littluns!" "Somebody has to look after them." "Nobody has so far." By this, the author makes reference to the government, Jack, and how government officials disregard its "people", the littluns.
One of the deepest symbolic events in the novel, is Simon's discussion with the pig's head, or the Lord of the Flies. "And his gaze was held by that ancient, inescapable recognition." This statement is extremely crucial to understanding the theme of the novel Lord of the Flies. What the author means, is the inescapable recognition of human capacities for evil. Also, when the pig's head said, "I"m part of you", the author, William Golding, meant to convey that the capacity for evil is in everyone.