Books and Movies Reviews

Weiland; faith and reason

In the novel Wieland, Charles Brockden Brown utilizes a dichotomy between faith and reason. The main purpose of this underlying split is to shed light on the fact that the mind can be perverted. In a sense, reason and faith exist mainly as a manner in which the characters, specifically Clara and Wieland, can fully rely upon. The dichotomy between both the supernatural and natural reason manifests a sense of disregard for self-awareness, thus creating a situation in which Carwin can, quite frankly, utilize his disastrous voice.
The novel commences with the strange death of the elder Wieland. In turn, this sets the foundation from which the novel builds the conflict between faith and reason. It is also important to note that Clara states, "Was this the penalty of disobedience? this the stroke of a vindictive and invisible hand? Is it a fresh proof that the Divine Ruler interferes in human affairs, mediates an end, selects, and commissions his agents, and enforces by unequivocal sanctions, submission to his will? Or, was it merely the irregular expansion of fluid that imparts warmth to our hear and our blood, caused by the fatigue of the preceding day, or flowing, by established laws, from the condition of his thoughts?." This is quite significant because Clara's comments appear to create the dichotomy faith and reason. Also, it should be also noted that the characters all seem to have a disregard toward the elder Wieland's death.
Despite the fact that Wieland is interested in learning and expressions, he is seen as the main embodiment of intense and consuming faith. He is also the only character in the novel that tried to answer the question of his fathers bizarre death. As soon as Wieland hears thefirst voice, he immediately puts himself under the ruling of faith refusing thus to believe in the possibility of the perversion of his fathers mind. The irony of this situation is that Wieland is then destined to f…


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