Essay on Analysis Of `` Young Goodman Brown `` By Nathaniel Hawthorne

Essay on Analysis Of `` Young Goodman Brown `` By Nathaniel Hawthorne

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In the short story, “Young Goodman Brown”, Nathaniel Hawthorne enlightens his readers through symbolism regarding the plight of mankind. His ancestor John Hathorne, a judge during the Salem witch trials, compelled Nathaniel to use his literary work to express his thoughts about human morality. However, the guilt Hawthrone felt concerning his ancestors, caused him to add a “w” to his name to hide their relation. Salem, the setting for the story, foreshadows the symbolism that Hawthrone creates throughout his writing. The being known for its hypocrisy, a “goodman” could hide behind a pious persona and conceal his wickedness. In using the symbolism of a traveler with his staff, a forest and his “Faith”, Hawthorne develops the idea “evil is the nature of mankind.”
The main character, Young Goodman Brown, finds himself at a crossroads of sorts. He decides to leave his sweet, young wife “Faith” and venture off into a “dreary road, darkened by all the gloomiest trees of the forest.” Shortly into his journey our “goodman” is met by a “figure of a man, in grave and decent attire.” Hawthorne uses this traveler to represent all men, but particularly the essence of the “devil.” The characters throughout in the story see the traveler represent various people in their lives, and shows that evil comes in many forms and fashions. Hawthorne alludes to Goodman Brown’s sinful nature, by explaining how the traveler bears “a considerable resemblance to him [Goodman Brown], though perhaps more in expression than features. Still they might, have been taken for father and son.” This description is important, because it allows readers to see the evil inside of Goodman Brown and expresses the dark side of humanity’s character. Goodman Brown decides ...


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...important people in his life. “Faith, faith! cried the husband. “look up to heaven, and resist the wicked one.” Goodman Brown isn’t only calling for his wife to reject the philosophies of the devil, but he is crying out for his own redemption in tribulation. Even upon returning to reality, he never looked at this “Faith” the same way, just as a person who has had their beliefs shaken to the core. Goodman Brown’s revelation of his own “Faith” causes him to be live his life desolate of spiritual faith, and “his dying hour was gloom.”
Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short story “Young Goodman Brown” utilized various symbolisms to bring deeper meaning to his story. He was riddled with guilt from his ancestor’s pasts and wanted to bring discernment to his readers about their true nature. By his profound, eloquent metaphors, he is able to keep reader’s captivated for centuries.

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