Faith in "Young Goodman Brown"

655 Words3 Pages
In the allegorical short story entitled “Young Goodman Brown”, author Nathaniel Hawthorne uses the irony of words and their connotations to express his ideas. The most evident example of this word inference is the used of “Faith” as the name of Young Goodman Brown’s wife. Religiously, faith can be defined as “the belief and trust in God and in the doctrines expressed in the scriptures or other sacred works” (Merriam-Webster). Hawthorne uses the relationship between Brown and his wife to parallel that with his own personal faith. Although relatively new, as affirmed by Brown when he asks Faith, “Dost thou doubt me already, and we but three months married?” (Hawthorne) Brown’s relationship with both his wife and faith can be seen as strong and stable. Brown tends to mostly deal with small temptations which all of mankind must encounter. His journey into the forest specifically represents to Brown a temporary breaking point in the relationships as seen when he states, “After this one night, I’ll cling to her [his wife, Faith] skirts and follow her to heaven”. (Hawthorne) Followers affiliated with a sect of the Christian faith often find themselves justifying their sinful behavior by promising God that it will be a solo occurrence. When Brown first encounters the Devil in the forest, he replies to the Devil’s reproach for his lateness, saying “Faith kept me back awhile” (Hawthorne). Brown genuinely desires to flee from...
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