The Devil And Tom Walker Greed Research Paper

1197 Words5 Pages

Rachel Powell
Mrs. Gehbauer
English 3- Virginia
30 November 2015

His Greed Makes Him His Own God

Tom Walker is obsessed with power. His love for greed is over-powering and he will do anything to advance himself economically, even going above the health and safety of his wife. After his wife’s death, he seems unfazed, and continues forward pursuing the devil. The Devil and Tom Walker is one of Washington Irving’s most remembered stories. The Devil and Tom Walker is inspired by the German folktale of Faust. Irving takes the legend of Faust meeting the devil and selling his soul to him and transplants it into a New England setting. Washington Irving is one of the earliest known writers in the American Romanticism period. American Romanticism …show more content…

After tracking the devil through the forest and finally finding him, Tom tries to strike a deal with the Devil. After a little push and shove, Tom talks the devil out of [Tom] being a slave trader and instead a usurer in Boston. While discussing his deal with the devil and negotiating what to charge customers, the devil orders, “’You shall open a broker’s shop in Boston next month’ ‘I’ll do it tomorrow, if you wish,’ said Tom Walker.‘You shall lend money at two percent a month.’‘Egad, I’ll charge four!’ replied Tom Walker” (Irving 9-10). Tom is very quick to jump to charging the customer more, knowing that the more he charges, the more goes into his pocket. He is very eager to please the devil and does not have any issues complying with his [the devil’s] requests. When Tom is first introduced to the reader at the start of the story, Irving uses harsh adjectives to describe Tom, stating that he is a “Meager, Miserly Fellow” (Irving 1). Tom is lost in his greed for money and power. He is very stingy with his money, and a miserable excuse for a human, since he is overcome with his greed and selfishness that consumes him. Tom Walker is a sickening symbol of what happens when humans become consumed in greed- they lose their soul to the obsession of obtaining

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