Lord of The Flies- Whats In A name?
Uploaded by ml8878 on Mar 27, 2004
Today, many readers of literature adopt an impression that all fictional books are naught but a good fairytale in a land far, far away, once upon a time. The Lord of the Flies takes place during an unreal time period, and its plot develops on a fictional island secluded from civilization. However, some of its contents are far from being the exaggerated concoctions of William Golding. This book is not simply about the adventures that a group of boys go through, but it is full of wisdom and philosophy that may be imperceptible at first. I think with further analysis, many of the seemingly confusing, and purposeless areas of the book can be understood. One of these interesting, yet difficult-to-understand sections of the book is; why did William Golding title so specifically this little boy, Percival Wemys Madison?
There was only two people who had a last name in this book. One was Jack Merridew, who was possibly one of the most influential and complex characters of the book, if giving him a full title recognized his importance, that I could understand. However, here was a boy who had little to do with most of the plot. He was only mentioned several times, and even when he was mentioned, he was portrayed as a whiny, annoying, and unwanted child. “As loud as percival”(87) had become quite a description for weeping little ones. Even the tiniest bit of problem could upset him greatly. However, when asked by Ralph for his name, he gave an answer that seemed as if it was repeated thousands of times before, “Percival Wemys Madison. The Vicarage, Harcourt St. Anthony, Hants, telelphone, telephone…“ (86). Not only did William Golding give him a last name but a middle name also, along with his former address.
Many questions formed in my mind when I took the time to look into this passage. Mainly, why had the author choose to give Percival such a detailed profile? If it served no purpose, it could have easily been omitted, and like the rest of the children, Percival could have just as well served his role with only a first name. If William Golding had a greater plan for the name, what was it? How did it help develop the story, and what point did it help to bring across to the reader?
William Golding’s reason...