–paperback cover of Lord of the Flies I remember
Were you required to read Lord of the Flies by William Golding in high school? Do you remember much about the book? I only read the dystopian novel the one time, and I thought it was brilliant. I do remember that Ralph was the protagonist and that Piggy was the weak one with “asthmar.” Probably because someone from my high school wrote “Sucks to your asthmar, Piggy” near a railroad trestle close to our school. I was searching around for a “G” topic, and happened upon Golding. What caught my attention was the fact that he was born in 1911, the same year and a few weeks before my grandfather, and died in 1993 (outliving my grandfather by 11 years). For some reason, I thought Golding and the novel were older than the reality. I also realized that I knew nothing about William Golding, so welcome to “G” as part of the A to Z Challenge.
–young William Golding, picture from his publishers of Lord of the Flies
William Gerald Golding was born in Cornwall, England. He grew up in Wiltshire, the son of a grammar school teacher (father) and housewife and suffragette (mother). Golding went to Oxford and majored in English literature, graduating in 1934. He married in 1939 and he and his wife had two children, a girl and a boy.
–the Golding family in the 1950s
In 1940, Golding enlisted in the navy and took part in the sinking of the Bismarck. He also was involved in D-Day on Normandy and in the Walcheren battle later in 1944. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1988 and died in 1993.
Golding won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize in 1979, the Man Booker prize in 1980, and the Nobel prize for literature in 1983. He left a draft of a book, The Double Tongue, which was published posthumously.
I enjoyed reading and listening to Golding’s Nobel Prize lecture. You can read and listen by clicking HERE.