Jack Merridew

Jack Merridew "He was tall, thin, and bony, and his hair was red beneay the
black cap. His face was crumpled and freckled, and ugly without silliness."

A cruel and ugly bully, he early develops a taste for violence. He is a leader
of the choir at first, and then of the hunters. His leadership resides in his
ability to threaten and frighten those under him. He is always ready for a
fight. His victory over Piggy represents the triumph of violence over intellect,
as he smashes one of the lenses of the fat boy\'s glasses. The knife that he
carries is a symbol of the death and destruction that accompany his every act.

He does have some attractive qualities-bravery and resourcefulness. But these
are easily hidden by his newly discovered wrath, envy, pride, hatred, and lust
for blood. He is constantly attempting to weaken Ralph\'s hold on the boys. He
suggests opposite measures, he shouts abusively, he threatens, he is constantly
demanding to be made chief. In all, he is a complete stranger to polite
behavior. In his constant rivalry with Ralph, and in his constant preoccupation
with killing, whether it be pigs or fellow human beings. He could always be
found leading the boys into a chaos of brute activities. His egotistical
outbursts and his temper tantrums suggest that he is immature in his social
development. But as hunter and killer he is extremely precocious. The readiness
with which he throws himself into the existence of a savage, as he pauses to
sniff the air for scent, or falls to his knees to inspect the pig droppings, or
runs naked and painted through the forest, suggests the flimsiness of the
restraints and patterns of civilization in a personality in which the
destructive passions flow strongly. If the novel is read as religious story,

Jack emerges as an delegate of the Devil, enticing the other boys to sin. If the
novel is read as a representation of Freudian (Iím Learning this in Psychology
now) principles, Jack represents the primitive urges of the id. In the symbolic
representation of the processes of life and death, Jack suggests, both in the
black cloaks which he and his followers wear and in his association with
darkness, the power of death. In his first appearance, coming out of the
"darkness of the forest" to face Ralph, whom he cannot see because his
back is to the sun, Jack represents the Satanic and deathly force coming to
confront the divine and life giving man of light. The blood that he wallows in
is a further representation of deathliness. When, after his first kill,
"Jack transferred the knife to his left hand and smudged blood over his
forehead as he pushed down the plastered hair," he unconsciously imitates
the ritual of the tribal initiation of the hunter, whose face is covered with
the blood of his first kill. Finally, if the novel is read as the story of human
civilization, Jack represents the influences of unreason and confusion and
violence as they operate counter to the progress of human virtues and social