Key Characters

Quick revise
  • Ralph is the original leader of the boys on the island.
  • Golding presents him as a fair leader, allowing votes and he is caring for the other boys as he wants to run the group in a democratic way.
  • He has a loyal group of supporters initially, but gradually his support dwindles until he is alone being hunted by the others at the end.
  • Ralph is presented as a thinker and a sensitive character.
  • He learns a lot from his time on the island and is the one most affected by the change from innocence to knowledge.
  • Jack is Ralph’s rival and opposite.
  • Along with Ralph he is the oldest boy on the island and he already has a loyal group of followers when they arrive on the island in the form of the choir.
  • He is a strong and violent figure who commands fear from his followers.
  • He rules by force, which can be linked to Hitler’s dictatorship in Germany and he forces his supporters to do as he says.
  • He is a physical character and gradually becomes more violent as the novel progresses.
  • The intellectual of the island.
  • Serious, he often objects to the silliness of the other boys’ games.
  • Physically weak (he needs glasses, has asthma and is fat).
  • An adult figure, he comes up with a lot of sensible ideas such as how to use the conch and what to use it for.
  • Clear sighted, he can see what is happening to the boys, but is powerless to do anything about it.
  • Cruel, violent shown by his enjoyment of throwing stones.
  • Sadistic attitude, he is in charge of all the physical punishments.
  • Jack’s right hand man, as all dictators need close supporters.
  • The mystic, he sees into the future and often goes into trances.
  • A Christ like figure, he is compassionate, but a victim of the savagery of the others.
  • A deep thinker.