Inherit the Wind


Inherit the Wind

In Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee’s tense drama, “Inherit the Wind”, three strong characters express powerful opinions: Bertrum Cates , Henry Drummond, and Mathew Harrison Brady. First, Bert Cates, the defendant, is charged with teaching “Darwinism” to his sophomore class . Second, Henry Drummond, the defense attorney for Cates, displays his beliefs of the right to think. third, Mathew Harrison Brady, the “big-shot” prosecuting attorney, illustrates his bigotry of creationism. To conclude, these three essential characters are fighting for their personal beliefs.

Primarily, Bert Cates, a 10th grade teacher, struggles to obtain his right to have an open-mind, and encourages others to do so. The defendant, simply tries to teach a lesson in his Hunter’s Civic Biology, but while doing so is hastily over charged by the bigots of Hillsboro, Tennessee. As he explains himself to a fellow school teacher: “I did it because...I had the book in my hand...and read to my sophomore science class chapter 17, Darwin’s Origin of Species...All it says is that man wasn’t stuck here like a geranium in a flower pot; that living things come from a long miracle, it didn’t just happen in seven days”. It seems odd, or even bizarre that this premise is so hard to accept in Hillsboro. All in all, Cates is merely opening another aspect to the beginning of time.

Another powerful opinion yearning to be exposed, is the one held by Henry Drummond, the defense’s attorney. The lawyer undoubtedly came to defend Cates and any other person in the world the right to believe or think anything they may desire; whether it be “wrong” or “right”. He clearly values this when he explains to the judge “I am trying to establish, Your Honor, that Howard - or Colonel Brady - or Charles Darwin - or anyone in this courtroom- or you, sir - has the right to think!”. Drummond feels strongly that the right to think is very much on trial and hopes that justice will be reached. In summary, Henry Drummond values deeply every human’s right to imagine or give credence to anything.

In addition, Mathew Harrison Brady, the prosecution, gives a strong opposing viewpoint to the morality of the issue. He believes every word of the book of Genesis, and can not comprehend any other possibility to the beginning of life. As he is unusually testified, he states, “Everything in the Bible should be accepted, exactly as it is given there”. This rules out any other likelihood that something similar to Darwinism could have ever been imagined. Ultimately, Brady keeps an open and shut opinion to anything germane to life, morality, or creationism.

In conclusion, the play “Inherit the Wind” is strongly influenced by characters Bert Cates, Henry Drummond, and Mathew Harrison Brady. Bert Cates is first given the guts to stand up for what he believes in, and peruse it throughout all of its hardships. Second, Henry Drummond helps defend Cates, establishing the fact that he and everyone else has the right to think. Lastly, Mathew Harrison Brady, displays his opinion that there is only one right and wrong, and only one beginning to life. Therefore, these characters uphold there opinions, and either try to help others to understand them, or force them upon other people.

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