As Reverend Brown viewpoints the platform to supply hissermon, the phase directions emphasize Hillsboro’s enthusiasticreception that its spiritual leader: “The prayer conference is motionpicture, radio, and tent-show to this people. To them, the ReverendBrown is a mix Milton Sills and Douglas Fairbanks.” In thisrural community, religion is not just a overview for ethical conductbut additionally a primary resource of entertainment. The playwrights’ comparisonof Reverend Brown come Milton Sills and also Douglas Fairbanks—popular filmstars during the era the the Scopes trial—emphasizesthis point. Likewise, the style in i beg your pardon Reverend Brown delivershis sermons resembles theater an ext than teaching. In ~ the finish ofthe scene, we room left through the feeling that fundamentalist Christianitymonopolizes the townspeople’s worldview. Us feel that the residentsof Hillsboro may only profess their belief in this brand of Christianitybecause small-town life has actually exposed lock to little else. Much more exposureto science, literature, or philosophy might cause them to waverin their ideas or to investigate and also define them much more critically.Indeed, the townspeople’s changing allegiances close to the finish of theplay check these possibilities.
The extreme nature of Brown’s sermon—which damns Cates andall those who assistance him, including his very own daughter—leads Bradyto voice a various opinion, one the contradicts Hillsboro’s brandof fundamentalism. Through Brown having whipped the crowd right into a zealousfrenzy, Brady becomes uncomfortable and outright objects to Brown’streatment of his daughter. Brady reminds Brown that a quote native theBible, “He that troubleth his own residence . . . Candlestick inherit thewind.” Brady indicates that Brown, by happen condemnation ~ above hisown daughter, will certainly leave himself with nothing however his own hot air.In this departure, Brady distinguishes self from Brown and also hisdocile Hillsboro pendant by advocating the Christian practiceof forgiveness. Once Brown curses his own daughter, practicallywith glee, Brady reminds him that his mission is to save human being souls—notto hasten your damnation. Unequal Brown’s fire-and-brimstone sermonizing,which draws greatly from parts of the Old Testament, Brady emphasizesthe much more forgiving brand-new Testament doctrines of Jesus. Although Bradydoes display screen his re-superstructure of weaknesses, especially his vanity and also ceremoniousself-importance, his reaction to Brown’s sermon indicates that hepossesses a compassionate streak the Brown lacks.
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