Lisa Cook's Reviews > Inherit The Wind

Inherit The Wind by Jerome Lawrence
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's review
Nov 02, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: high-school, teaching
Read in January, 2003

I read this novel as a high school freshman, and I really liked it then, and I still like it now. I enjoy such realistic historical fiction, and especially since this play revolves around the issues of education, I always felt a special connection to it. The film version with Spencer Tracy is definately worth seeing, but the play itself is quite brilliant.

This play is based on the real-life Scopes-Monkey trial that rocked middle America in the 1920's. In Inherit the Wind a teacher violates state law and teaches his science class the theory of evolution - a highly scandalous action in an area that firmly believes in its creationist roots. This well-meaning teacher quickly becomes the center of a public debate that grows larger in proportion than he could have imagined. Two lawyers, the brightest legal minds of the time, engage in a civilized courtroom knock-down, drag-out trial that both know will resonate throughout history. Knowing the impact this decision will have, both lawyers sacrifice everything to prove their points of view, and the face of religion and education are both affected by the outcome.

This play is highly suspenseful, very character driven and historically important. It does its job well.
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