How did Jonathan Edwards communicate his social views in "The Devil and Tom Walker"?The answer should be in form of an essay in which you explore how Jonathan Edwards communicate his social views.

3 Answers | Add Yours

scarletpimpernel's profile pic

scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

It's rather difficult to tell to what your question is referring because Jonathan Edwards did not write "The Devil and Tom Walker"--Washington Irving did, and he and Edwards would have had very different views.  Irving actually mocks the Puritans in the short story. Are you perhaps writing a comparison between the presentation of Puritan views in Irving's "Devil and Tom Walker" and Edwards' "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God"?

I'm adding this part because I can't answer this question twice. No offense to whoever created your assignment, but it's very awkwardly written because an author cannot "communicate his views" through another author's work. At any rate, what your teacher most likely wants you to discuss is how Irving's story illustrates some of Jonathan Edwards' and other Puritans' views.  Here are several examples of Edwards' beliefs evident in "The Devil and Tom Walker."

1. Edwards and the Puritans viewed the devil as a man in black who roamed the forest looking for sinners to sign their names in his book. In "Devil," Tom meets the devil in the forest, and the devil does indeed try to get Tom to make a deal with him (i.e., sign over his soul).

2. Edwards emphasizes hell as a fiery pit ever waiting to swallow up unrepentant sinners. In Irving's story when Tom meets the devil, he is covered in soot, and Tom smells a burning scent emanating from the devil. This implies that the devil guards a fiery version of hell.

One thing to keep in mind is that Irving's story is a satire; so he is not trying to present Edwards' view of the devil, sinners, and hell as factual; rather, Irving is mocking Puritan fears, superstitions, and hypocrisies.

I hope that this is a start for your assignment!  Good luck!

gella's profile pic

gella | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted on

No. I'm supossed to write an essay in which you explore how Jonathan Edwards communicates his social views in “The Devil and Tom Walker.”

These are some sources to refer to:

1.      Poems by Anne Bradstreet

2.      “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” by Jonathan Edwards

3.      “The Devil and Tom Walker” by Washington Irving

4.      “Thanatopsis” by William Cullen Bryant

5.      Any text byEdgar Allen Poe

gella's profile pic

gella | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted on

No. I'm supossed to write an essay in which you explore how Jonathan Edwards communicates his social views in “The Devil and Tom Walker.”

 

We’ve answered 318,919 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question