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Hawthorne’s View Of Puritanism Essay

627 words - 3 pages

Nathaniel Hawthorne is a well known 19th century author. One reason he is well known is his view towards Puritanism. Hawthorne would often criticize Puritanism in his short stories and novels. Two short stories that show Hawthorne’s view of Puritanism are “Young Goodman Brown” and “The ministers black veil”.
In “Young Goodman Brown” Hawthorne uses the hypocritical nature of Young Goodman Browns neighbors and friends to show the hypocritical nature of the puritan people. In the story, Young Goodman Brown is led by the devil to a witching party in the woods. At the witching party he sees all the people he thought to be honorable and pious. He sees his minister, and Goody Cloyse, the woman who taught him his catechisms, meeting with the devil. He even sees his wife about to join the commune but doesn’t see whether she does or not because he resists the devil and wakes up by a tree. After witnessing these things in the woods Young Goodman Brown can’t look at the people he loved and looked up to in the same way anymore. He becomes a bitter and distrustful old man because of their hypocrisy.
Hawthorne also does this in “The Minister’s Black Veil”. In “The Minister’s Black Veil” Good Parson Hooper, the minister in the puritan town of Milford, comes to church wearing a black veil. The minister does this because of some secret sin. What the sin was is never told but many think it had to do something with the funeral of the young lady at the beginning of the story. Minister Hooper tries to use this veil to show that everyone sins even those thought to be more holy than normal. But the people of Milford are hypocritical and do not acknowledge that all people sin. Instead they try to get Good Parson Hooper to take off the veil so they don’t have to acknowledge their sins....

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