Summation of the Virgin and the Dynamo

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Ben McAllister
English 190
10/4/2010
In Henry Adam’s “The Dynamo and the Virgin,” he starts to speculate about Christianity’s strength during the medieval times and how it can be related to the twentieth century energy, using the dynamos, that produced electricity. He says when he relates religion and energy,” As he grew accustomed to the gallery of machines, he began to feel the forty-foot dynamos as a moral force, much as the early Christians felt the Cross.” By doing this he is explaining he believes the relation between the machines and their parts are just like the Christians being part of the Cathedral and their faith. Therefore, after his relation is given between faith and science, decides he is going to combine the two in his studies, and everything that is considered irrational, he would say it takes faith to believe. He goes on to say how there could never be an American Virgin, since we relate that to sin. As he gets older, continues to search for reasons why the Virgin is still lost in our culture, and he explains it has always been there. He says the Virgin is a force that shaped our Western Civilization, but we had to find her. Word count: 199

Grade: 17/20. Overall, pretty solid here, Ben – the first half of the summation works very well, as you’ve got a clear opening sentence and a pretty clear link to what Adams sees the connection between the two symbols. But, one thing to think about adding here would be less about how Americans see the Virgin, and how of how Adams sees the dynamo – how does he see that symbol as power?

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