Nathaniel Hawthorne and His Religious Connotations in His Works

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Nathaniel Hawthorne and His Religious Connotations in His Works Nathaniel Hawthorne is noted for his religious connotations in his works. Young Goodman Brown, The Minister's Black Veil and The Birthmark is three exemplary stories. His writing technique uses ambiguity in that the reader is opened to many different ways of interpretation. In respect to religious methodology the main character's of these short stories all encounter some sort of revelation. In Young Goodman Brown the main character leaves his pure wife Faith adorned in pink ribbons symbolizing her innocent nature on a short but very intriguing journey. His walk begins in the woods adjacent to Salem Village, and with him he is accompanied by a devilish character. It seems unlikely that Goodman Brown would be associating with shady man, as he knew that Goodman Brown was a devout Puritan and bared such a respectable name. "I have been well acquainted with your family as with ever a one among the Puritan's." (Hawthorne 312) This being said by the older man, Brown decided reluctantly to move on. He knows whom he is dealing with but still ventures on. In the back of his mind he was always thinking of Faith, his wife, and "faith" the most important thing in a Puritan's life. Hawthorne uses the word faith as a symbol that Brown must turn around and come back to his wife and his faith. He explains "But were I to go on with thee, how should I meet the eye of that good old man, our minister, at Salem Village?" (Hawthorne 313) Young Goodman is seeing that his involvement with this man was wrong and he must leave, but still he continues on after seeing the encounter the old man had with Goody Cloyse. Goody screeched "The devil!" upon meeting the shady man. She herse... ... middle of paper ... ...ed so badly to remove it that it started to drive the both of them mad. She finally gave in and let him remove it. Upon removing the blemish though it freed the perfect angel inside of her and caused his wife to pass on. The closest thing to earthly perfection was freed. These stories have all had key religious symbolism in them. First in Young Goodman Brown, the young man had a struggle with good and evil. HE desperately wanted to go back to his faith but seeing all of his contemporaries living a life of darkness caused him to assume that all he knew was wrong and that evil was taking over the world. He felt that righteousness was lost and the devil had taken over. The Minister's Black Veil symbolized how to show your sins to others and you personally deal with them. Mr. Hooper was Christ like in that in a way he was wearing a veil for all mankind's sins.

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