Analysis Of The Book ' The Reader ' By Louisa Thomas Essay

706 Words Dec 11th, 2016 3 Pages
Louisa Thomas’ book Conscience detailing the lives of her relatives leading up to and during World War I is a tale which reveals the effects that war and a changing era have on faith, loyalty, and a person’s conscience. While the plot is told in relation to the life of Norman Thomas, a man who began the war as a minister and ended it as a socialist and pacifist, the other characters are integral in relaying the central themes. Throughout the book, the reader can follow Norman Thomas’ changing point of view, the fluidity of his conscience in action. He was brought up under the morals of his father, a Presbyterian minister, but his education at Princeton under the guidance of Woodrow Wilson greatly influenced him as well. Norman Thomas did not officially become a socialist until the end of the war, but that is not to say he did not begin to follow socialist beliefs during the book. Rather, the reader observes Norman Thomas create a brand of socialism all of his own, influenced by his religious upbringing and his college education. His version began with the Social Gospel, which preaches that while one should strive for holiness in the eyes of God, they should also work to create a better life on Earth along with the aim of creating more brothers and sisters in Christ. He struggled with his changing beliefs while working in an immigrant community in a parish, following the guidance of his conscience.
While both his faith and the faith of his brother Evan Thomas would…

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