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Unformatted text preview: Throughout An American Tragedy, Dreiser has dramatized the failure of religion to guide Clyde over the hazardous terrain of modern American life. Nowhere is this failure more dramatized than in this section. The narrator's picture of Elvira praying in her dreary mission is that of a biblical figure as an alien in a six-thousand-year-old world. As Elvira prays for help, she thinks of the newspapers and thanks God for this enlightenment. Even some skeptics are moved by her earnestness, faith, and love. The pragmatic Jephson thinks that the religious element which was ready to condemn Clyde might now aid his mother-and Elvira views this as the voice and hand of God. Fighting fiendish doubts about Clyde and about God's desertion, she reaffirms her faith and encourages Clyde to read specific pages from the Bible. Ironically, the prevailing attitude among the professed Christians is that specific pages from the Bible....
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This note was uploaded on 11/27/2011 for the course ENG 101 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.
- Fall '08