William Golding Timeline

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    Early Education

    William Golding began his early education at the school that his father taught in, Marlborough Grammar School. At age 12 (1923), he unsuccessfully wrote his first novel. However, he was very troublesome as he frequently harassed his peers (Biography).
  • The Author Born

    William Golding was born in Saint Columb Minor, Cornwall, England. He was raised by his mother, a women's rights activist, named Mildred and his father, a schoolmaster, Alex. He grew up in a 14th century style home next to a graveyard. (Biography)
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    Brasenose College - Oxford

    After primary school, William Golding was accepted into Brasenose College at Oxford University. Although his father wished him to be a scientist due to his anti-religious views on life (Cliffnotes). So he took science for 2 years (Cliffnotes), but later Golding instead majored in English (Biography).
  • The First Novel - Poems

    In 1934, William Golding published his first novel, Poems, a year before graduating. But, it was highly overlooked by critics, so it received little to no recognition (Biography).
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    Following his Father - Teaching

    After college, William Golding worked in settlement houses and the theater. However, he soon discovered that following his father through teaching was the best option through English and Philosophy at Bishop Wordsworth in Salisbury. Golding would later be inspired by misbehaving children to create his soon to be famous novel : Lord of the Flies (Biography).
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    From 1935 to 1939, Golding worked in theater for quite some time. Through this, he was inspired by Shakespeare and other famous authors and writers (Cliffnote).
  • Marriage

    In 1939, in the same year Golding began teaching, he married Ann Brookfield. The 2 later had 2 children (Cliffnote).
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    Joining the Navy

    Golding later joined the Royal Navy for the next 6 years where he was serving on boats in the Navy. However, there were instances where he assisted Lord Cherwell in Naval Research. Through this, he found a love for the sea and also discovered the capabilities of evil that humans had in the war(Biography).
  • Back to normal life

    After World War 2, Golding later returned home and continued teaching and writing. However, he also received inspiration from the war for his soon to be novel (Biography).
  • Lord of the Flies

    After being rejected 21 times, William Golding finally managed to publish his first novel : Lord of the Flies. The book is regarded as a classic and stirs many discussions due to it's symbolism and high analysis (Biography).
  • A Follow up of the Lord of the Flies

    After the publication of the Lord of the Flies, Golding quickly followed up the book with his personal favorite, The Inheritors. The book depicted how homosapians brutally dominated over other species (Cliffnote).
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    Royal Society of Literature and Commander

    In 1955, after Lord of the Flies was published, Golding was granted membership to the Royal Society of Literature. Later in 1965, he was made a commander of the British Empire (Cliffnote).
  • Pincher Martin

    After writing The Inheritors, Golding followed the book with Pincher Martin in 1956. The book was very similar to the Lord of the Flies where the protagonist struggles for survival (Cliffnote).
  • Free Fall

    Unlike his other novels, Free Fall was a novel written in the first person narrative in 1959. The book heavily criticizes the line between rationalism and faith (Cliffnote).
  • Lord of the Flies- the movie

    After Golding's retirement in teaching, a film of Golding's novel was made by Peter Brook. This was the first film ever made of the novel (Biography).
  • The Spire

    In this novel, Golding criticizes faith. The character, a Dean, follows God's command and builds an additional 400 feet on top of the existing Cathedral, but the cost of so many lives is something he realizes far too late (Cliffnote).
  • The Pyramid

    In this novel, the English social class is examined. The issue in the novel is music as it uses the same structure as sonata, a musical form (Cliffnote).
  • The Scorpion God : Three Short Novels

    In this series, published in 1971, the advancement of technology is ridiculed. One novel was published in 1956, which turned into a comedic play, The Brass Butterfly, first performed in 1958.
  • Darkness Visible

    In this novel, the moral compass of good and evil is the center idea. This is acted through Sophy, a character that takes life, and Matty, a character that gives his life for others (Cliffnote).
  • Booker Prize

    In 1980, one of Golding's novels received the Booker Prize. This was significant as the Booker Prize is a very prestigious award (Cliffnote).
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    The Sea Trilogy

    The Sea trilogy was a series of 3 full length novels written by Golding and considered very ambitious. The 3 novels, Rites of Passage (1980), Close Quarters (1987), and Fire Down Below (1989) follow the emotional and moral growth of a young aristocrat (Cliffnote).
  • Nobel Prize - Literature

    At the age of 73, William Golding received the Nobel Prize for Literature. This was 2 decades after the first film was created (Biography).
  • Paper Men - The worst novel?

    Paper Men was considered the worst literary piece Golding had ever written due to the criticism it gave towards critics. The plot centers an elderly man trying to elude a young scholar to write his biography (Cliffnote).
  • Knighted by the Queen

    5 Years later, recognized by Queen Elizabeth II, Golding was Knighted. This was for his literary talents and in his accomplishments (Biography).
  • Lord of the Flies - The 2nd movie

    In 1990, a newer version of the Lord of the flies movie was released. This shed light of the novel to the new generation (biography).
  • The End Point

    In 1993, Golding died of a heart attack in Perranarworthal, Cornwall. However, after his death, another novel, The Double Tongue, was published (biography).