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John Bunyan: The Pilgrim’s Progress

Bunyan’s ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’ is considered one of most famous allegorical novels in English Literature.The story is about Christian’s spiritual journey going through various phases of temptations and trials.Published in 1678, The Pilgrim’s Progress is an inspirational aid for applying an evangelical view of Protestant Biblical to the trials in life.

The value of The Pilgrim’s Progress to the Puritans is extremely effective aid to applying an evangelical view of Protestant Biblical theology to the trials faced in human’s life portrayed effectively through various images and allegorical characters.

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Through its images, allegorical characters (Christian, Evangelist, Help, etc), and allegorical places (“City of Destruction” = earth, “Celestial City” = heaven, “Tophet” = hell) Pilgrim’s Progress Bunyan effectively show readers about spiritual journey in Christianity.

Allegories are very popular regarding that they are the simplest way to educate to and to confirm people’s belief system. An allegory is designed to illustrate a coherent doctrine, which exists outside the fiction. The important matters in allegory is not the adequacy, coherence, or consistency of the doctrine which is being illustrated in the story, however, it is how the words deals with the belief system.

Everything in the story bears the point of reference to more specific aspect of the controlling doctrine, which the fiction is illustrating. Allegories do tend to be philosophical, also has its nature of affecting readers psychologically, and Bunyan has succeeded using this convenience to help the readers understanding the spiritual gloom. His success can be measured by its part of metaphorical personifications, which have entered the public vocabulary, as he used these encounters: Slough of Despond, Apollyon, Giant Despair, and Ignorance.

Thus we can conclude that Bunyan has been triumphant in playing with images and allegory through out the novel effectively. Reference: Henri Talon, John Bunyan: The Man and His Works . Harvard University Press, 1951. Robert G. Collmer, Bunyan in Our Time . Kent State University Press, 1989. Vera Brittain;, Valiant Pilgrim: The Story of John Bunyan and Puritan England . Macmillan, 1950. Galen K. Johnson, “The Portable Bunyan: A Transnational History of the Pilgrim’s Progress . ” Christianity and Literature, (2005):

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