Guilty In Doubt

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Innocent Until Proven Guilty Innocence is a very tricky subject to cover through the course of a paper. In the play Doubt: A Parable by John Patrick Shanley there is one fundamental question. Throughout the story a woman named Sister Aloysius is the principal of St. Nicholas School, and she is suspecting the pastor, Father Flynn, of having inappropriate relations with one of their students, Donald Muller, and wants to have Father Flynn kicked out the church. I am arguing that Father Flynn is an innocent man through the way that he treats and cares about the boys and that Sister Aloysius is a crazed, hell bent woman willing to do anything to get him out of the church. Throughout the story Father Flynn shows compassion for all the kids in the…show more content…
When Father Flynn confronts Sister Aloysius one on one about the topic he finally figures out what had started Sister to think this way of him: “On the first day of the school year, I saw you touch William London’s wrist. And I saw him pull away.” [Father Flynn responded] “That’s all?” [and Sister Aloysius confessed] “That was all” (Shanley 52). Towards the end of the conversation between the two it starts to seem that Sister Aloysius is realizing how crazy it sounds of what she is accusing him of based on this sole fact that she saw. The fact that she sounds defeated not only through the way a person can read it but also how in the film when she said the last line she sounded defeated. It started to grow when Sister James told Sister Aloysius that she believed that Father Flynn was innocent after he was able to provide the reason he wanted to keep it a secret, and Sister Aloysius responded by saying: “I’ll bring him down. With or without your help” (Shanley 35). With this one simple sentence you can see that Sister Aloysius is not willing to stop at anything in order to get Father Flynn kicked out of the church. With all of the evidence pointing to his innocence and every person agreeing with Sister James; Sister Aloysius is still as stubborn as a bull in order to prove him guilty on her own. Even when Mrs. Muller says that she…show more content…
The other common point is in the end when it seems that Father Flynn is bargaining and compromising in order to receive a less dire punishment. When Father Flynn hears that Sister Aloysius called his last church he responds by saying: “You have no right to act on your own! You are a member of a religious order. You have taken vows, obedience being one! You answer to us!” (Shanely 54). Father Flynn seems enraged by hearing that Sister Aloysius when through his past, this could imply that he has something to hide. On the contrary no one likes when people dig through their past even Sister Aloysius doesn’t like talking about her past husband who died in the war. Other people would also say that when Father Flynn leaves the church that is a confession of his guilt, while they couldn’t be more wrong. When your back is against the wall and someone offers you a chance to leave you take it no matter if you are innocent or guilty. However the major reason that Father Flynn is innocent is proven in the very last line of dialogue by Sister Aloysius: “I have doubts! I have such doubts!” (Shanely 58). Through this ending you can see that even the one woman who was the only one convinced that Father Flynn was guilt; doubts if he was in fact guilt. The lengths she went to, the vows she broke, and how deep she dug all on
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