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Freud’s of Id and Ego’s Relationship in the The Lord of the Flies

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In The Lord of the Flies, William Golding uses Freud’s psychoanalysis to develop conflict between the characters. In the book, Jack and Piggy do not get along. They have almost opposite personalities. Jack represents the dark side of mankind and Piggy represents the vulnerable side of mankind. William Golding uses the characters, Jack and Piggy to represent the relationship between Freud’s Id and Ego.

Jack displays Freud’s Id when he acts solely based off of his instincts. He acts before he thinks things through which Golding uses to show that he is losing his humanity. Anyone would lose their morality if they were a child on a deserted island. Jack has a leader’s mentality, so when he feels disrespected he retaliates. Jack bullies the weak like the littluns and Piggy. In chapter 5, Jack teases the littluns about being scared of the beast. “The thing is–fear can’t hurt you any more than a dream. There aren’t any beasts to be afraid of on this island… Serve you right if something did get you, you useless lot of cry-babies!”. Jack is angered by the littluns crying.

This shows that Jack represents the dark side of civilization. Jack demonstrates Id by displaying his desire for power. He does not see himself as a savage, but his actions tell another story. “We’ve got to have rules and obey them. After all, we’re not savages”. In chapter 2 Jack is Ego. He is more of a leader. “Kill the pig. Cut her throat. Spill her blood.” Jack is acting violently because he gets to kill the pig. “You should have seen the blood!”. In chapter 4 he leans toward Id. ‘I went on. I thought, by myself–‘ The madness came into his eyes again. ‘I thought I might–kill.’. At this point, Jack is starting to lose connection with civilization. “Jack made a rush and stabbed at Ralph’s chest with his spear… They were chest to chest, breathing fiercely, pushing and glaring”. Jack has lost his humanity to the point where he is attacking the man he once respected. He is acting savagely.

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Piggy demonstrates Freud’s Ego because he thinks more about the Consequences like the Superego but he has some Id moments. “What are we? Humans? Or animals? Or savages? What’s grownups going to think?”. “That’s right. We was on the outside. We never done nothing, we never seen nothing”. Piggy tries to deny the fact that Jack, Ralph and the boys who are a part of the tribe killed one of the boys. He struggles with accepting the truth that because he is on the island he has to act based on instincts.

Piggy is very intelligent. He thinks logically “Life,’ said Piggy expansively, ‘is scientific, that’s what it is”. He came up with the idea of using the conch. “We can use this to call the others. Have a meeting. They’ll come when they hear us—”. Piggy is an important character in the story. Piggy is one of the more vulnerable characters because he is an outsider and an outcast. The boys don’t like him because he likes to lecture and criticize others. “ How can you expect to be rescued if you don’t put first things first and act proper”. “You’re talking too much… Shut up, Fatty”.

Piggy tries to create a list of the boys’ names. Jack is able to bully him around. “Piggy was surrounded before he could back away. ‘Here- let me go!’ His voice rose to a shriek of terror as Jack snatched the glasses off his face”. This shows Piggy’s weakness because he let the boys take his glasses. Piggy could have stood up for himself and be a great leader if he used his weakness as strengths. He is inquisitive and the smartest of all the boys. The boys wouldn’t be living without Piggy’s knowledge.

In The Lord of the Flies, William Golding uses Jack and Piggy to represent the relationship between the Id and Ego. Jack hunts, fights and kills to survive. He thinks it is okay to hurt others to protect himself. He is the Id. Piggy is scared and thinks things through. Piggy is the Ego. In conclusion, anyone could be a Piggy or a Jack. Jack’s instinct is to survive and Piggy’s instinct is to be rescued.

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Freud’s of Id and Ego’s Relationship in the The Lord of the Flies. (2022, September 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 21, 2023, from
“Freud’s of Id and Ego’s Relationship in the The Lord of the Flies.” Edubirdie, 15 Sept. 2022,
Freud’s of Id and Ego’s Relationship in the The Lord of the Flies. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 21 Sept. 2023].
Freud’s of Id and Ego’s Relationship in the The Lord of the Flies [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Sept 15 [cited 2023 Sept 21]. Available from:
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