Free YGB Essay - Formalistic Approach to Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

Free YGB Essay - Formalistic Approach to Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

Length: 738 words (2.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Young Goodman Brown:  The Formalistic Approach

In reading Nathaniel Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown, I found many of the formalistic approach concepts in this short story. The concepts in this short story were simple to see and to understand. There was much discussion about the symbolism, allegory, and allusion, along with the ambiguity, and form.

            The formalistic approach to reading is one of the most common approaches to reading literature. The formalistic approach has three main points to it: symbolism, allegory, and allusion. However these are not the only criteria that belong to the formalistic approach. Ambiguity, form, and organic form are also a part of it. Symbolism can refer to an image. "When an image takes on meaning beyond its objective self, it moves into the realm of symbolism (86)". Allegory is "a one to one equivalence between the surface meaning and a higher meaning(101)". An example of this is a man named Christian that is christian. Allusion is a reference to something else, maybe another piece of literature or another movie. Allusion can lead to the reader's knowledge of the rest of the story. Ambiguity is the use of a particular word, but yet the word itself has many different meanings. Form is the way the reader identifies a story whether it is a story or a poem. The organic form has two parts: the local texture and logical structure. The local texture is the specific metaphors while the logical structure is the basic idea or argument of the story.

In Young Goodman Brown, symbolism is displayed in many areas. The first obvious one is the use of the word faith. Young Goodman Brown has a wife named Faith and in the later part of the story he actually loses his faith. The pink ribbon can also be used as a symbol. This is also a demonstration of ambiguity. Red often refers to sex while white refers to purity. However since pink is a mixture between red and white this leads us to think that there can be suspicion in this story. Other symbols from this book are the names of the people. In our class discussion we talked about the Puritans and the way they named their children. They name their children after things that are very important to them such as faith, purity, and chasity. Throughout this book there are many names used such as Faith and Goodman Brown.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Free YGB Essay - Formalistic Approach to Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown." 13 Nov 2019

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Formalistic Approach to Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown Essay example

- Formalistic Approach to Young Goodman Brown The Formalistic Approach can be found throughout "Young Goodman Brown," a short story written by Nathaniel Hawthorne. The Formalistic Approach is one of the most frequently used approaches. It concentrates on the concepts of form, tension, image, and symbol; as well as point of view, irony, and paradox. These styles appear throughout the story. Form in the past has meant what is now known as external form, the way one identifies the work. This type of form is usually associated with poetry....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
666 words (1.9 pages)

Formal Analysis of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown Essay

- A Formal Analysis of Young Goodman Brown Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" is an interesting short story that creatively tells two stories at once. One story is of a man leaving his wife one night and venturing into the woods, and the other is of his struggle with his religious faith. In reading this story, it is beneficial for one to look at it from a formalistic point of view. Formal analysis makes the reader look closely at how a story is written to see its deeper meaning....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Research Papers
848 words (2.4 pages)

Free YGB Essay - Innocence vs Reality in Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- The story Young Goodman Brown presents two themes; loss of innocence and coping with reality. Loss of Innocence is a major theme of the story and is easily seen. A loss of innocence is when those that do not know something horrible or do not believe in its existence come to an understanding of that horrible thing that forever changes them. The innocents in the story are Goodman Brown and his wife, Faith. Faith, we see is capable of attaining heaven(577), a good place where evil is unknown. Brown is also an innocent as shown by when the devil reveals to him a series of horribles as the two walk through the woods-namely that his grandfather, his mentor, and the preacher have all communed with...   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
494 words (1.4 pages)

Free YGB Essay - The Message of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- "`Lo. there ye stand, my children…”     In the story "Young Goodman Brown", the prominent theme is that everyone has a dark side. As the dark figure clearly states, "Evil is the nature of mankind." Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" describes the hunger for virtue people of the early 19th century had, and how that virtue is all but a dream, through his tone and imagery.             As the passage begins, the first word read is "Lo!" An audience reads this word, and immediately gets the feeling that someone of a supreme nature or of high power is speaking....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
1054 words (3 pages)

Free YGB Essay: Historical and Biographical Impact of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Young Goodman Brown: Historical and Biographical Impact So much for textual matters, paraphrasable content, and genre. What kind of historical or biographical information do we need in order to get the full impact of this story aesthetically and intellectually. Obviously, some knowledge of Puritan New England is necessary. We can place the story in time easily, because Hawthorne mentions that it takes place in the days of King William (that is, William III, who reigned from 1688 to 1702). Other evidences of the time of the story are the references to persecution of the Quakers by Brown's grandfather (the 1660s) and King Philip's War [primarily a massacre of Indians by colonists [1675-1...   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
1142 words (3.3 pages)

Free YGB Essays: Nathaniel Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Young Goodman Brown" by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a story about revealing true evil and the loss of one man's faith. Nathaniel Hawthorne left "Young Goodman Brown" up for many interpretations. After reading the story a couple of times, one thing became clear to me. What I absorbed from this story was that evil exists in everyone, does not matter how good we may think we are. Things aren't always what they seem. I say this because the people who attended the devil's meetings, were the ones who attended church with him....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
2045 words (5.8 pages)

Free YGB Essay - Perceptions of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Perceptions of Young Goodman Brown In "Young Goodman Brown", Nathaniel Hawthorne makes visible the perception we have of what is chaste and amoral by showing Goodman Brown that the people perceived as being the most holy are just as guilty of immoral thoughts. The naming of Goodman Brown is that it could be anyone that has to face these moral issues between good and evil. It is an everyday occurrence for us to want to test the waters of evil. The story is a reflection of existence, being that each has a path to take and decisions to make....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
1085 words (3.1 pages)

Free YGB Essay: Genre and Plot of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Young Goodman Brown:  Genre and Plot Young Goodman Brown is a short story; that is, it is a relatively brief narrative of prose fiction (ranging in length from 500 to 20,000 words) characterized by considerably more unity and compression in all its partstheme, plot, structure, character, setting, moodthan the novel. In the story we are considering, the situation is this: One evening near sunset sometime in the late seventeenth century, Goodman Brown, a young man who has been married only three months, prepares to leave his home in Salem, Massachusetts, and his pretty young bride, Faith, to go into the forest and spend the night on some mission that he will not disclose other than to say t...   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Free Essays
794 words (2.3 pages)

Free YGB Essay: Deciphering a Passage of Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Deciphering a Passage from Young Goodman Brown " Lo. There ye stand, my children…'" In the first line of this passage, the figure is trying to gain the trust of the people congregated around the alter. This figure, Satan, is standing before the citizens of Salem addressing them as 'my children' in order to lure them into a false belief in him as their savior. His deep, solemn, and almost sad tone commands sincerity and, seemingly, his feelings of sadness that their belief in God did not work out....   [tags: Free Essays on Young Goodman Brown]

Free Essays
1057 words (3 pages)

Essay on Symbolism and Double Meaning in Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

- Young Goodman Brown: Symbolism and Double Meaning Young Goodman Brown is definitely a story with several meanings and images. As I was reading this story I was overwhelmed with the visual and technical images that Hawthorne projected. There was so much symbolism and double meanings in the story that I believe everyone in the class was confused at one point or another. Seemingly to the degree that they re-read the story a second time just to try and "fill" themselves with the actual vision of the reading....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]

Research Papers
775 words (2.2 pages)

Related Searches

            The use of allusions is present throughout this story. When Young Goodman Brown is talking about his wife, he is constantly talking about own faith. On page 375, he refers to his wife as his love and faith. This shows how he mixes the two words, trying to mean the same thing. Another example is while he is walking on the path and he encounters a man who has been waiting for him. Young Goodman Brown replies that "Faith kept him behind (376)". When Young Goodman Brown cries out "My Faith is gone (382)!" These are just a few examples of allusions that are used.

            The form and organic form of this short story are quite simple. Young Goodman Brown is a short story. This is the form or the external form. The organic form, as mentioned before, has two parts to it: local texture and logical structure. The local texture is the comparison that is made between things. The comparison that I noticed is the one where there is a description of red fire and a man who is mean and controlling. I make this comparison to the devil and hell. The logical structure of this story is a young man that has a wife, who ironically is named Faith, goes out one night on a journey. His wife begs him not to go but he does anyway. On his journey he encounters the devil and because of the devil he loses his Faith and his faith. When he comes back from his journey, he is a changed man. However his change is not for the better but for the worst.

            Through our readings in class of the formalistic approach and Young Goodman Brown, I was able to make connections between the two. The key concepts of the formalistic approach are symbolism, allusion, allegory, form, and ambiguity. The symbolism in this story was the most important concept that I saw in it. Although it was not the only concept that was demonstrated in the story.
Return to