Few, if any, women in Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown” are truly good. Even the seemingly best ones are involved in devil-worship – at least, and maybe much more. This essay intends to explore this subject of bad women in the tale.
Randall Stewart in “Hawthorne’s Female Characters” states that there are three types of female characters in Hawthorne’s writings: (1) “the wholesome New England girl, bright, sensible and self-reliant;” (2) “the frail, sylph-like creature, easily swayed by a stronger personality;” and (3) “the woman with an exotic richness in her nature” (98), and that “Young Goodman Brown” has in Faith “cheerfulness, prettiness, and a simple-minded domesticity” (99). So this categorizes her under type (1). Goody Cloyse may be a type (2). In “Young Goodman Brown” the references to abortion and euthanasia refer to types (1) and (2) in my judgment.
In Salem village that fateful night when the young Puritan husband was departing home for the night, he exchanged “a parting kiss with his young wife.” From this we can conclude that he had a basic respect for her feelings(?) The wind was playing with “the pink ribbons of her cap.” Literary critic Wagenknecht surveys some of the critical interpretation relative to these ribbons:
Mathews finds the pastel of infancy in pink, but since pink is a color intermediate between red and white, William V. Davis prefers to take it as suggesting “neither total depravity nor innocence” but “the tainted innocence, the spiritual imperfection of mankind,” a view shared, up to a point, by Robinson. . . . (62).
So the critics would have us believe that the author is making a statement here: that seemingly good Faith is not all that good, based on...
... middle of paper ...
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Complete Short Stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne. New York: Doubleday and Co., Inc.,1959. 247-56.
Lang, H.J.. “How Ambiguous is Hawthorne?” In Hawthorne – A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by A.N. Kaul. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1966.
Leavis, Q.D. “Hawthorne as Poet.” In Hawthorne – A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by A.N. Kaul. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1966.
Martin, Terence “Six Tales.” In Nathaniel Hawthorne. New York: Twayne Publishers Inc., 1965.
Stewart, Randall. “Hawthorne’s Female Characters.” In Readings on Nathaniel Hawthorne, edited by Clarice Swisher. San Diego, CA: Greenhaven Press, 1996.
Wagenknecht, Edward. Nathaniel Hawthorne – The Man, His Tales and Romances. New York: Continuum Publishing Co., 1989.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Few, if any, women in Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown” are truly good. Even the seemingly best ones are involved in devil-worship – at least, and maybe much more. This essay intends to explore this subject of bad women in the tale. Randall Stewart in “Hawthorne’s Female Characters” states that there are three types of female characters in Hawthorne’s writings: (1) “the wholesome New England girl, bright, sensible and self-reliant;” (2) “the frail, sylph-like creature, easily swayed by a stronger personality;” and (3) “the woman with an exotic richness in her nature” (98), and that “Young Goodman Brown” has in Faith “cheerfulness, prettiness, and a simple-minded domesticity” (99)... [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]
1900 words (5.4 pages)
- 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]
927 words (2.6 pages)
- In 1835, Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote a short story called “Young Goodman Brown.” This story takes place in the woods of Salem Village, Massachusetts. The main character, Goodman Brown, walks into the forest one night and meets a number of town members participating in what seems like a witch ceremony. It changes his outlook on the village people. The entire short story takes place in one night and the morning after. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s great grandfather served as a judge on the salem witch trials in 1692 and sentenced twenty five women to death.... [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown]
1654 words (4.7 pages)
- “Young Goodman Brown” was a story published by Nathaniel Hawthorne in the mid-1930s. For one thing, I completely agree with the significance of this story. Hawthorne drew a vivid picture in my head throughout the whole story. Even though most of the story took place as a dream, he did a fantastic job in making that dream seem real. At that instance, I knew that this story had a major meaning behind it. To clarify, Nathaniel Hawthorne wanted people to know that everyone isn’t exactly who they seem.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
833 words (2.4 pages)
- The use of symbols in today’s culture has become so widespread that they often go unrecognized as symbols. Things like the American flag are a great example of a symbol, but they are seen so often that they become overlooked. Symbols are also incredibly common in literature, and authors love to use them to add a second meaning to many things in their stories. Nathaniel Hawthorne was a huge fan of symbols, and made that apparent in his short story Young Goodman Brown. The story is flush with symbols, and they can be easily grouped into three categories.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
1671 words (4.8 pages)
- Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines evil as “morally bad; causing harm or injury to someone; marked by bad luck or bad events”. Christians believe the devil is the symbol of evil. The Bible says “And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Revelation 20:10). In literature, evil is usually portrayed as a devilish creature, usually bearing the color black as if it was made out of the shadows.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Devil]
1501 words (4.3 pages)
- In the story of young Goodman brown the Author of the story, Nathaniel Hawthorne, uses symbolic characters that represent life. In the story, Young Goodman Brown goes into a journey into the cold, dark, and lonely forest. Faith, his wife is rejected by young Goodman brown when she asks him to stay with her that night and to forget about the journey. Young Goodman Brown tells her that she will be all right without him and that he has to go into that journey. This is an image of what many people do, if not all people.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mind]
1442 words (4.1 pages)
- Symbolism in Nathaniel Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown Nathaniel Hawthorne utilizes symbolism throughout his short story Young Goodman Brown to impact and clarify the theme of good people sometimes doing bad things. Hawthorne uses a variety of light and dark imagery, names, and people to illustrate irony and different translations. Young Goodman Brown is a story about a man who comes to terms with the reality that people are imperfect and flawed and then dies a bitter death from the enlightenment of his journey through the woods.... [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne Young Goodman Essays]
1272 words (3.6 pages)
- In Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" the use of symbols contributes to the development of the story's plot. Symbolism is used as a means to uncover the truth about the characters. The author, in an attempt to manifest the moral aspects of his society, uses many kinds of symbols to support his points. When analyzing an allegory like "Young Goodman Brown", the reader must realize that the story is in its entirety, a symbol. Hawthorne, through his writing is trying to convey the contradicting aspects of the Puritan ideology.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown Essays]
2768 words (7.9 pages)
- Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne "Young Goodman Brown", by Nathaniel Hawthorne, is a story that is thick with allegory. "Young Goodman Brown" is a moral story, which is told through the perversion of a religious leader. In "Young Goodman Brown", Goodman Brown is a Puritan minister who lets his excessive pride in himself interfere with his relations with the community after he meets with the devil, and causes him to live the life of an exile in his own community. "Young Goodman Brown" begins when Faith, Brown's wife, asks him not to go on an "errand".... [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]
2423 words (6.9 pages)