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The Fragility of Doubt - Assignment Example

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In the paper “The Fragility of Doubt” the author analyzes the theme of Doubt in the play. The play shows that doubt has conflicting purposes: to right wrongs or to continue doing them. Sister Aloysius and Father Flynn both doubt others for not abiding by high social standards and moral codes…
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The Fragility of Doubt
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Download file to see previous pages When Sister James says that she can handle her class, Sister Aloysius makes her doubt herself by saying: “But perhaps you are wrong. And perhaps you are not working hard enough” (Shanley 18). She wants Sister James to doubt her performance as a teacher, so that she will never stop criticizing her abilities and so that she will continue growing as a teacher and as a nun.
Sister Aloysius, furthermore, doubts those who violate moral codes. She has an instinct for detecting suspicious behavior. She could be right because Father Flynn has been defensive when asked about what he did to Donald Muller. Instead of simply saying he did nothing, Father Flynn answers: “Whatever I have done, I have left in the healing hands of my confessor” (Shanley 49). The way he gives vague answers confirms that he has done something wrong in the past and that he might as well have done something wrong with Donald too.
Besides doubting others, Sister Aloysius shows her Socratic side when she doubts her teaching abilities. Socratic means she knows that she knows nothing. She reveals to Sister James that she has been married before taking the habit, but she admits that she “would feel competent to lecture tittering girls on the subject of womanhood” (Shanley 23). Sister Aloysius is aware of her weaknesses as a teacher, which is quite important because doubt can be used as a means for self-improvement.
Like Sister Aloysius, Father Flynn also doubts others. He doubts his team of basketball players for not giving their best. He believes that they should set high social stands and excel in their performances. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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