Exploring Goodman Brown’s Perceptions of Reality
The story of Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne, chronicles the dreams and visons of a young man struggling with his beliefs in 17th Century Puritan society. In the dream, Goodman Brown is compelled to evaluate and reflect on the evils that exist in the world. He is shown to be completely disillusioned. The story relies heavily on the reader’s interpretation of the meaning of Goodman Brown’s encounter in the woods (Trevelyan 1983, pp.35). The story also explores Brown’s introspection and questions his morality and belief.
The introduction begins with Goodman Brown’s leaving his wife Faith to run an errand in the forest. Faith makes many futile attempts to deter Brown’s from leaving the house. Faith may be interpreted as his conscience, the bearer of something good, something Goodman is looking and hopes for. Hawthorne describes that Goodman Brown believes Faith “is a blessed angel on earth; and after this one night, I’ll cling to her skirts and follow her to heaven”. Goodman Brown hopes that Faith, his love, will redeem him after he completes his “evil purpose” (Hawthorne). Goodman’s statement amplifies his…show more content… They have been married for a brief period of three months and very much in love. Faith is slowly getting used to being married and tries to enjoy her new life with Brown. Brown extends the same love Faith has towards him. Yet, hurts his wife in the process of finding himself. He sides with “evil” by leaving his house. He disobeys the people he cared about and goes against his religion. But, in doing so he sees the true colors of his loved ones and his close friends. The truth is ultimately unveiled and Brown discovers the hidden evil. He was a hero because he knew the truth and kept it as a burden in his life. He was a hero for acknowledging and accepting the truth and moving on (Guerin, 1985, pp.