A Look At Young Goodman Brown

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Nathaniel Hawthorne's famous Young Goodman Brown is one of the most interesting, yet creepy short stories written. Within this beautifully structured story of the 19th century, is a man whose curiosity started the fight between good and evil inside each individual human being. In addition, the story tells the tragic relationship between the main character Young Goodman, and his young wife. Throughout the story, Goodman's character development is affected by the experiences he goes through. At the beginning, Goodman is a good young man with faith in everyone's "pure intentions." He innocently believes in the good in everyone, but towards the end of the story, he's view on the world changes. He ends up having a dark perspective and finds himself unable to trust those around him. Young Goodman Brown was a sweet, innocent individual who lived his life carefree. He believed everyone was good and with thoughts of his loving wife, Faith, he avoided all evil. In Goodman’s eyes, Faith was the “purest soul.” Without realizing the bad intentions Goodman’s journey holds, he leaves home unable to tell Faith why. Goodman uses the excuse that he would “cling to her skirts and follow her to heaven" (Hawthorne) one he came home from his journey. While traveling through a dark forest, Goodman observed what was going on around him and could feel the fear within him. “What if the devil himself should be at my very elbow!” (Hawthorne) On his journey, Goodman meets a middle aged man, walking through a narrow path. After a greeting, they decided to continue the journey through the forest. The middle aged man wore plain attire and carried a staff shaped similar to a realistic serpent, which moved. The middle aged man begins to talk about Goodman’s anc... ... middle of paper ... ...has lost her “pure soul.” He stopped his religious practices and whether or not this experience was real, it didn't matter to Goodman. He had transformed from an innocent young man and into a unfaithful, dark man who trusted no one. This experience changed him so much, he gave up the one thing he truly believed in; Faith. Young Goodman Brown has taught readers about how easily an experience can change who a person is. Someone could be so pure, but changed in an instant, if the right experience occurs. When Goodman first adventured through the forest, he planned on returning home, still very pure. He never thought for a second he would turn bad, but with the turns of event that had happened, it was hard for Goodman to not change. Works Cited "Young Goodman Brown." By Nathaniel Hawthorne. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2014. < http://www.online-literature.com/poe/158/>
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