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Nath Hawthrone Essay

816 words - 4 pages

Formalist Response to Hawthorne’s Young Goodman Brown
Nathanial Hawthorne’s tale of Young Goodman Brown
The story is told from a third person, unknown narrators’ point of view. The narrator seems like a mostly trustworthy person, until the end of the story is reached. Is Young Goodman Browns journeying just a dream, or is something wicked happening the woods of Salem. Salem is historically the setting of the infamous witch trials of the 1690’s, and this is roughly when the story takes place. The story is an allegory, a story that has a hidden meaning, traditionally a moral one. However, because of the uncertainty of the events, there is not a straightforward meaning to what that moral ...view middle of the document...

The devilish man casts the first doubt onto Young Goodman Brown world. The man is even described as having a resemblance to Goodman Brown, almost fatherly in fact. This is reinforced later on, when Goody Cloyse is seen walking through the woods that night, ‘undoubtedly praying’, and sees the Devil, who she claims is the very image of Young Goodman Browns grandfather when he was young.
Young Goodman Brown is both figuratively and literally married to his Faith. His wife of only three months is described as being a loyal and devout woman. She worries about her husband and bids him to stay in that night, and not journey on his errand, all with her pink ribbons in her hair. Pink is a color commonly associated with young girls, and therefore, seems perfect for Faith, who at first glance, seems a simple character. However, pink is a mixed color, a combination of both red, a color associated with temptation and evil, and white, the color of innocence. If we read this from an allegorical point of view, it indicates that Faith, while as the narrator claims, is ‘aptly named’, her character could swing toward either the dark side of the Devilishness, or the light side of God. Faiths ribbons make an appearance several times in the forest before she is revealed to be the new convert.
Several times during the...

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