Analysis Of ' Hawthorne 's ' Young Goodman Brown ' Essay

Analysis Of ' Hawthorne 's ' Young Goodman Brown ' Essay

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In Ambivalence in “Young Goodman Brown”, Walter J. Paulits argues that Hawthorne draws on the point of ambivalence of the main character, rather than focusing on the main character is just doubtful throughout the story. Paulits begins his argument with a quote from Angus Fletcher, author of Allegory: The Theory of a Symbolic Mode, to explain what Hawthorne uses as allegorical intent. Paulits even incorporated another one of Hawthorne’s works, “Rappacini’s Daughter” to state that Hawthorne has done this method of writing in other works of his. Paulits states that the first evidence we have as readers of ambivalence is in the beginning of the story. It is where Goodman Brown is torn between leaving his wife Faith and meeting the Devil in the forest.
When Goodman Brown decided to go into the forest and leaves his wife Faith, Paulits argues that is important that when he does go into the woods, he is still undecided about which path he will take. Paulits states that this is important for his “emotional ambivalence-he wants two things strongly enough to be unwillingly to give up either” (578). No matter how Goodman Brown feels, he continued his journey into the woods with the Devil. During Goodman Brown’s travel, he questions why he left his house and his wife. Goodman Brown stops several times during his travel and second-guesses his reasoning on why he is on the trip. Each time, he is swayed back into conversing with the Devil and they begin to walk further into the forest unconsciously.
Continuing on with analyzing “Young Goodman Brown”, Paulits even identifies what kind of persuasion the Devil is using against Goodman Brown to convince him to join his cult with the rest of the townspeople. Paulits also brings in ties...


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...r ribbon Faith had, and how it appeared again in the forest later that night? Another aspect that I wish we had would be the point of view from Faith and the rest of the townspeople on how Goodman Brown was acting the following days. Their reactions could really tell the readers if the meeting with the Devil and with all the townspeople worshipping the Devil that night was real or not.
I agree with Paulits’ ending points stating that this story was an example of ambivalence for other individuals and still have relevance between individuals today. Someone could be caught between two paths in their life. The only problem with today is that the individual stuck in the middle, needs to pick the best choice fully hearted, or they will end up like Goodman Brown and just skeptical and judging his townspeople. Doing so caused him to live a sad and miserable life.

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