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Theatrical Drama - Doubt and Trifles

            In John Patrick Shanley's theatrical drama, "Doubt," and Susan Glaspell's "Trifles," two main characters are accused of very serious crimes. A priest named Father Flynn is accused of child molestation in Doubt. A depressed housewife named Minnie Foster is charged with the murder of her husband in Trifles. Examining the evidence in both of these works that were used against Father Flynn and Minnie Foster can help to decide one's belief of the innocence or guilt of each character in the crimes.
             Doubt by John Patrick Shanley takes place in a Catholic School in the Bronx during 1964. The principal who is also a nun named Sister Aloysius is very stern when running her school. She instructs each teacher to report to her any unusual behavior of faculty or students to her immediately. Eighth grade teacher Sister James reports Father Flynn's special interest in the only colored boy in the school Donald Muller. Meeting alone with the boy in the rectory, the smell of alcohol on the boy's breath after one of the meetings, and his distraught behavior are all of the evidence that sister Aloysius needs to prove him guilty in her mind. In order to confront Father Flynn about their suspicion they call him for a meeting to discuss the Christmas Pageant. Sister eventually brings up her suspicions and Father Flynn is insulted and wants her to leave the issue alone because it could ruin his reputation. He leaves the meeting and does not like how sister Aloysius handled it. .
             His next sermon is about gossip and how easily it spreads. Sister Aloysius is unable to ignore her suspicions and decides to meet with Mrs. Muller. Sister is surprised to hear that Mrs. Muller wants her to drop this topic because she is her concerned about her son graduating a good Catholic School in order to get into a good high school which will open opportunities for him. His mother tells Sister about how hard the boy's home life is due to his abusive father.

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