Academic Master


Inherit the Wind Drama Analysis

The drama Inherit the Wind is fiction on the 1925 Scope monkey trial that states the teaching of Charles Darwin’s evolutionary theory of selection in the town where the learning of any evolutionary concept was forbidden. The Tennessee state passed the Butler Act, which states that teaching institutes should promote citizenship and morality according to the judo-Christian values. The teachings of Darwinism and the theory of evolution are contrary to the Butler Act.

The lead character of the play Bertram Cates has been teaching evolutionary science. The state law said that God created humanity and earth according to biblical teachings in Genesis. The drama asserted the development of two schools of thought: evolutionist and creationist. The evolutionists believed that humans have an ancestry relationship with primates while the creationists thought that humans designed them entirely on Earth. They do not have any resemblance to monkeys or other gorillas. The belief of the creationist is based on the teachings written in the bible. This fictional play is a debate between creationists and evolutionists.

In the drama Inherit the Wind, the play’s evolution point says that evolution is a science and not a theory. The scope trial on resolving the Butler Act failed to resolve the issue. The majority of Americans believed in the theory of creationist and biblical views. However, after the Scopes trial, it was clear that evolution was accepted as a basic science discipline. The attitude of Americans changed in 1967 that Darwin’s theory of evolution is acceptable and that Darwin’s theory is a part of evolutionary science. Americans took it positively along with other disciplines after the Scoops trial. [1]

The debate on the issue of creationism and evolution transformed the whole scenario of the play into a politicized issue. The involvement of ACLU lawyers in the trial intensifies the level of speeches from the standpoint of both clans rather than to resolve the issue. The focus that needed was to improvise the understanding of the science concepts that were layered under the politicized angle of science.

The evolution issue has flared the conservatives see evolution as a plan that subjugates the beliefs of the founders of American conservatives. On the other hand, evolutionists thought that creationism was not the perspective of modern science. And it would transform the American secular culture into a theocracy. [2]

Science and religion can coexist on the point of origin of humanity. Science helps us understand the biology of humans and religion tells us about God’s divine power. Science cannot answer questions regarding the logic behind the origin but how the evolution process works. Meanwhile, religions have the answer and base for logic. They cannot negate each other. Scientists did not negate the significance of religion, but they acknowledge it. The only key is to balance both for the harmony. [3]

The film ends with the verdict that science and religion can co-exist. The character of Henry Drummond the lawyer for Cates’s evolutionary theory testifies in court and questions Brady about the justification of logic that the bible can give. The verdict that comes out after the trial compels the audience that science and religion are incompatible, and they can co-exist; both the bible and religion have competing views. Moreover, Drummond holds the bible and the origin of species theory in hand and balances them together at the end of the play to show the balance between the two.

The past and present views changed as a result of the trial. Drummond pushed the envelope by questioning the conservatives whether they believed in evolution. The answer that he got shows the fundamentalist thinking of old school on the people. This thinking pushed Drummond to talk about the importance of recognizing the advanced and educated view of science which can coexist with the conservative view. The other aspect that Drummond changed was thinking of city vs. rural standpoints. New Americans have all the facilities of modern style while the brought up of rural people come from only one school of thought which is a fundamentalist. This view changed through the inculcation of new ideas into the minds of small-town people. This notion offended many rural conservatives, but Drummond invoked it through the process and brought change in the people during the trial, leading to acceptance of coexistence between science and religion [4]


Lawrence & Lee. Fundamentalist vs.Freedom. n.d.

Lee & Lawrence. Inherit the Wind. n.d.

Nat Geo. Evolution and Religion. 2004. 2004.

Winnick, R.P. “A Jealous God: science Crusade against religion.” Winnick, R.P. A Jealous God: science Crusade against religion. Tennesse: Nelson Current, 2005. 152-153.



Calculate Your Order

Standard price





Pop-up Message