Deus Ex Machina In Lord Of The Flies

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Deus ex machina introduced a god in the final scene of Greek and Roman plays, magically resolving conflicts the characters faced.. Although mythology is absent from today’s definition, the general idea of an outside force resolving difficulties remains. William Golding includes this literary element in his novel Lord of the Flies in the form of an unexpected rescue by a naval officer. The officer appears at the perfect moment to bring Ralph, Jack, and the rest of the boys back to the world of man, saving them from their own savagery. Golding’s use of deus ex machina effectively and logically solidifies his theme of man’s inherent savagery. Golding utilizes deus ex machina to bring the novel to its most logical conclusion. Considering the succession of events prior to the resolution,…show more content…
In order to find Ralph, Jack sets the jungle on fire, and while running from him, Ralph points out, “Now the fire was nearer; those volleying shots were great limbs, trunks even, bursting. The fools! The fools! The fire must be almost at the fruit trees -what would they eat tomorrow?” (Golding 198). Ralph sees the devastation of the forest and knows with the way the fire is progressing their sources of food will be destroyed. Without food, and with the jungle scorched, the boys would have suffered immensely until rescue or their demise. Likewise, Ralph specifically faces a situation which, without external intervention, should have caused his annihilation. Golding presents Ralph’s potential fate while he is on the run from Jack’s hunting party. As he flees, Ralph ponders what would happen if: “[...], he met the chief, or Roger who carried death in his hands?” (Golding 196). If Jack’s tribe would have caught up with Ralph, they would have killed him. However, Ralph’s murder, as opposed to Simon’s or Piggy’s, would have taken place intentionally which showcases the savagery within

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