Austrian and personified in William Golding’s novel, Lord

Austrian physician Sigmund Freud proposed that there are three principles that drive human behavior: ID, Ego, and Superego. ID is the pleasure principle, giving immediate gratification. Ego is the conscious part of the brain that seeks to balance the demands of ID, Superego, and reality. Superego is conscious part of the mind that weighs consequences of choice. These principles are reflected and personified in William Golding’s novel, Lord of The Flies. Golding does this through the novel’s main characters: Jack, Ralph, and Simon who personify ID, Ego and Superego accordingly.
Jack epitomizes Freud’s idea of ID. His aggression clearly demonstrates selfish behaviors in which he seeks to satisfy his own wants and needs. After Jack mercifully slaughters the swine nursing its offspring in the forest, he plants the sow’s head on a stick “for the beast” (156, Golding). Jack’s belligerent behavior towards the pig exemplifies the idea of ID theorized by Freud because Jack foolishly bases his behavior on spontaneous impulses as opposed to actions that would benefit the group’s chances of making it off the island. Jack’s recklessness displays his immaturity as an individual. When Jack sees Simon walking towards the group, he shouts with fury, “Do our dance!” and fuels the group with rage, chanting “Kill the beast! Cut his Throat! Spill his Blood!” (174, Golding). Jack does not care about the prospective consequences in which murdering Simon would bring, instead, he acts upon ID, and seeks the immediate satisfaction and adrenaline his brain associates with murder and hunting.


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