Barchester Towers Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 54 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Barchester Towers.
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Church Doctrine and Reform

The major theme of Barchester Towers is the ongoing struggle between the conservative and liberal factions of the Church of England. The conservative, or high-church, faction seeks to preserve the ceremonies and traditions of the older church, usually involving great elaborate musical and spiritual exercises. In Barchester, the Archdeacon and his followers represent the conservative side. The liberal, low-church, wants to abandon symbols and concentrate on personal spirituality. In Barchester, Mr. Slope and Mrs. Proudie represent the liberal side.

The conservative side is shown as seeking to maintain the status quo at all points. It is also regarded as boring and unconnected to real life by many of the common churchgoers. Many members of the clergy, particularly Dr. Slope, are shown to have taken advantage of the lax accountability among established churchmen and have constructed ways in which they can receive a salary for work...

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This section contains 901 words
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Buy the Barchester Towers Study Guide
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