The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan

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John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress is an allegory; that is, Bunyan uses names to represent abstract qualities. Explain how Vanity Fair, Obstinate, Pliable, Help, and Faithful demonstrate the traits for which they are named and how they affect Christian's journey.

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Christian, the main character of the allegory and a sort of Christian "every man," desires to travel from the City of Destruction (the Earth) to the Celestial City (Heaven). He seems, at first, apprehensive about going but is convinced by Evangelist that he must seek his own deliverance and salvation. Even as his family calls to him, Christian runs toward the shining light and wicket gate. His neighbors are called Obstinate and Pliable, and they threaten to run and force Christian to come home. When they catch up with Christian, he warns them of the trouble to come and invites them along. Obstinate—whose name refers to his own stubbornness—refuses to "'leave [his] friends and comforts behind'" him, though Pliable—whose name refers to his complacency— declares his intention to "'go along with [Christian] and to cast in [his] lot with him.'" Pliable, however, is easily persuaded to go home when the pair reaches the Slough of Despond. Once he gets himself out, he leaves Christian behind...

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