Inherit the Wind

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A young boy and former student of Cates’, Howard claims, in the trial, that Cates taught him something of Darwin’s theory of evolution, but Howard admits that this theory had very little impact on his life—that he doesn’t feel, necessarily, that Darwin prevents him from believing in God or from behaving as a “good boy” would. Howard does, though, scandalize Melinda when he tells her she was descended from monkeys.

Howard Quotes in Inherit the Wind

The Inherit the Wind quotes below are all either spoken by Howard or refer to Howard. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Ballantine Books edition of Inherit the Wind published in 2003.
Act 2, Scene 2 Quotes

Let’s put it this way, Howard. All this fuss and feathers about Evolution, do you think it hurt you any?
Sir?
Did it do you any harm? You still feel reasonably fit? Did it hurt your baseball game any? Affect your pitching arm?
No, sir. I’m a leftie.

Related Characters: Henry Drummond (speaker), Howard (speaker)
Page Number: 72
Explanation and Analysis:

Drummond indicates, via his subtle interrogation of Howard, that the notion of a grand debate between religion and science is in many ways a construct, a falsity that is played out in the public eye, but that does not affect the day-to-day lives of the town in a significant way. For religious belief, Drummond implies, is an important method of orienting oneself toward the moral universe. With that said, religious belief has no effect on something practical like a baseball game—or, by this logic, on scientific realms, such as the objective study of the origin of human beings.

Drummond makes plain that there can be religion in American society in the twentieth century, but there cannot be religious absolutism. Modern society does not function if all is subordinated to religious belief. But religion can be a significant part of the moral systems of American communities, and can coexist with more "worldly" matters like baseball or scientific study.

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Howard Character Timeline in Inherit the Wind

The timeline below shows where the character Howard appears in Inherit the Wind. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, Scene 1
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
...is a scene of the courthouse square, the town square, and of houses beyond it. Howard, a thirteen-year-old boy, enters the courthouse square and is followed by a girl nearly his... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
When Melinda wonders how Howard can play with the disgusting worms in the ground, brought up by a recent rain,... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
...the young girl from the opening of the play, is selling lemonade, and Mrs. Blair, Howard’s mother, tells Howard to “spit down” his hair. Reverend Brown wants the town to appear... (full context)
Act 2, Scene 2
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
The scene opens in the courtroom, two days later; Brady is examining Howard, a student of Cates’, at the witness stand. Howard testifies that Cates taught, in class,... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
Brady makes a speech to the courtroom crowd, not just to the jurors, saying that Howard, if allowed to continue to be taught evolution, will one day become a Godless young... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
Drummond asks Howard whether it’s wrong that Darwin thought up his theory of evolution—the Judge temporarily stops Drummond,... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
Drummond then asks Howard, whose father is a farmer, if his father’s tractor was mentioned in the Bible, or... (full context)
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
Howard is excused by the Judge, and Rachel is brought to testify. Brady begins questioning her,... (full context)
Act 3, Scene 1
Science vs. Religion Theme Icon
David vs. Goliath Theme Icon
Oratory, Performance, and Public Speaking Theme Icon
Morality, Justice, and Truth Theme Icon
Open-Mindedness vs. Closed-Mindedness Theme Icon
...and broadcast over radio, can occur in the court after the trial ends. Melinda and Howard, together in the crowd, ask who won, and Howard says he does not know, but... (full context)