Greasy Lake by T. C. Boyle and Young Goodman Brown, by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Greasy Lake by T. C. Boyle and Young Goodman Brown, by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Length: 1926 words (5.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

How “bad” can one be when put in a seriously “bad” situation? “Greasy Lake,” written by T. Coraghessan Boyle, depicts some rebellious characters getting into situations that are too rebellious for them to handle. These various situations, as well as the characters themselves, tell the reader something more than what is actually happening in the story. This makes “Greasy Lake” an allegory, because it can be read at a literal level, but interpreted on a second, more meaningful level. The story of “Young Goodman Brown,” written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, can be considered an older parallel to “Greasy Lake.” The main character, an adventurous young man, sets out to do an evil deed and finds himself witnessing something more evil than he can imagine. Both stories tell the reader that when one is looking for trouble, one will find it.
The setting of “Greasy Lake” is a very important element to the allegorical side of the story. As the story opens, the tone that is set is one with attitude. Rebellion is an obvious theme in the opening paragraph. From the “torn-up leather jackets” (Boyle 64) to the “parents’ whining station wagons” (64), everything has a sense of rebellion. The last line of the first paragraph claims, “At night, we went up to Greasy Lake” (64). Night is a very important element to the story. It is the time of day where one cannot see exactly what is going on or what is going to happen. The theme of darkness continues through the second paragraph of exposition. The road to get to Greasy Lake is dark and lined with thick trees that are described as a “black unbroken wall” (64). The lake itself is then described as “fetid and murky” (64). The name of the lake puts the grimy, black image of grease into the reader’s mind. It s...

... middle of paper ...

Trouble will always find the one that looks for it. This is the underlying message in both “Young Goodman Brown” and “Greasy Lake.” For the boys it was their encounter with characters that are much more “bad” then they ever thought they could be. They realize that this type of lifestyle is going to land them in serious trouble as long as they keep it up. For Goodman Brown, his decision to go out in to the woods on an evil errand ends up taking a hard toll on the remainder of his life. The witch Sabbath he “witnessed” has permanently affected his faith and his well-being. Both stories can be read as rebellious stories with action that will cause the demise of the characters, but both stories can be seen as warnings not to participate in something that will bring trouble upon one’s life. Whether the effects are long term or short term, they will never be good.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

`` Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been? Essay

- ... (….). His tone is no longer sweet and convincing but now harsh and demanding. The reader starts to get the feeling that Arnold wants Connie for inappropriate reasons through his language. Phrases such as “I want you” and “I’ll show you what love is like, what it does” makes the reader feel as if Arnold is a pedophile seeking a young victim. Once the story is over you can’t help and notice that the story was a man pretending to be young to lure a child out of her house. Whether Arnold was truly the devil or not the reader goes through a series of vivid shocks until Connie finally gives in....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Goodman]

Powerful Essays
1338 words (3.8 pages)

Young Goodman Brown By Nathaniel Hawthorne Essay

- Young Goodman Brown, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, is the coming of age story of a Puritan man who embarks on an evening-long journey to test the resolve of his faith against the evil held in the world. The events of the journey witnessed by him will forever change his perspective of the world in an ironic way, as it would not be his resolve in his faith that would not be tested. Instead, he was given the opportunity to learn a valuable truth in that faith alone does not breed pure righteousness in man....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Sin]

Powerful Essays
1091 words (3.1 pages)

Essay on Young Goodman Brown By Nathaniel Hawthorne

- In “Young Goodman Brown” short story by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Goodman Brown and changes his attitude from loving to distasteful towards his wife Faith. The story begins with Goodman Brown saying goodbye to his wife, Faith, before leaving for a journey into the unknown in the dark forest. His wife advises him to wait until the morning, but Goodman Brown is certain that he needs to run this errand before the sunrise. The goodbye conversation is warm, intimate, and loving with mutual exchange of carrying words when Faith says: “’Dearest heart,’ whispered she, softly and rather sadly, when her lips were close to his ear, ‘pr 'y thee, put off your journey until sunrise, and sleep in your own bed t...   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Goodman]

Powerful Essays
928 words (2.7 pages)

Essay Young Goodman Brown By Nathaniel Hawthorne

- “young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a story about a man named Goodman Brown, who is married to a woman named Faith. Goodman Brown is traveling for a night, leaving Faith behind, Faith is terribly frightened of being alone, but Goodman Brown tells her “say thy prayers, dear Faith, and go to bed at dusk, and no harm will come to thee”. Mr. Brown begins his travel into the darkened forest as he walks, he is already scared of what might be hiding behind the trees “There may be a devilish Indian behind every tree” he continues to walk and he runs into an old man on the dirt path the man then greets Mr....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Faith]

Powerful Essays
1280 words (3.7 pages)

Essay on Analysis Of Nathaniel Hawthorne 's ' Young Goodman Brown '

- Breanna Duarte Mrs. Stanford DE English Comp 20 March 2015 Light and Dark "Young Goodman Brown", is one of Nathaniel Hawthorne 's greatest literary works. A story of temptation and faith, overflowing with hidden meaning and symbolism. Hawthorne shows faith as a great asset but, when that faith is jeopardized, one can become doubtful and cynical towards the world. In the story, Young Goodman Brown falls prey darkness and sin, despite seeing the light of heaven. He becomes a person who does not trust his own faith and dies corrupted by evil....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown]

Powerful Essays
927 words (2.6 pages)

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

- 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....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown]

Powerful Essays
1058 words (3 pages)

Nathaniel Hawthorne 's Young Goodman Brown Essay

- ... I believe love shouldn’t be punctured, or triggered in the wrong ways. In fact, I think love is the most sacred bond between human beings. Although I have these feeling toward love, multiple people believe its fine to hurt someone’s love. Nowadays, people thrive off ruining others’ lives. I feel it’s completely wrong to barge into someone’s personal life just to have a little fun in yours. With that being said when Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote, “Turning the corner by the meeting-house, he spied the head of Faith, with the pink ribbons, gazing anxiously forth, and bursting into such joy at sight of him that she skipped along the street and almost kissed her husband before the whole village....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne]

Powerful Essays
833 words (2.4 pages)

Nathaniel Hawthorne 's Young Goodman Brown Essay

- ... Taking the dark, dreary road into the forest symbolizes his act of jumping into the path leading to despair. The forest represents sin, and the evil grows stronger and stronger as Goodman walks further into the forest. Another symbol Hawthorne uses is Goodman Brown’s travel companion, the devil that meets Goodman in the forest. The traveler is representative of the devil and Goodman Brown’s dark side. When Goodman Brown is first approached by the devil in the dark, dreary forest, Hawthorne uses the word Faith when Goodman Brown explains his lateness to the devil by saying “Faith kept me back a while” (Hawthorne 22)....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne]

Powerful Essays
772 words (2.2 pages)

Nathaniel Hawthorne 's Young Goodman Brown Essay

- In Nathaniel Hawthorne short story “Young Goodman Brown,” he takes us on a journey of the human heart, in which he would later coin the phrase that “there is a fund of evil in every human heart”. Though the story is filled with dark gloomy imagery, Hawthorne was able to keep us wanting to know more base on the fact its Salem village. With the uses of symbolism, the author incorporate nature such as the “deep forest”, and “Faith” the newly wife of young Goodman brown working hand in hand to illustrate the purpose of the story....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne]

Powerful Essays
1024 words (2.9 pages)

Essay about Nathaniel Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Nathaniel Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown      In Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne tells the tale of a man and his discovery of evil. Hawthorne’s primary concern is with evil and how it affects Young Goodman Brown. Through the use of tone and setting, Hawthorne portrays the nature of evil and the psychological effects it can have on man. He shows how discovering the existence of evil brings Brown to view the world in a cynical way. Brown learns the nature of evil and, therefore, feels surrounded by its presence constantly....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne Young Brown Essays]

Powerful Essays
1846 words (5.3 pages)