Pit And The Pendulum Vs. Young Goodman Brown

977 words - 4 pages

The sad reality of life is that very few people fight oppression. Most talk about independence, but eventually most settle into a life that not even knowing someone else is in charge. In the Pit and the Pendulum, the narrator is ruled by his torturers and in Young Goodman Brown, the narrator is ruled by the Devil. Even though the narrator from the former story was ruled by his torturers, he maintained a more optimistic outlook on his challenges than Brown, who let the Devil take control and lost all hope in the world, proving that optimism is truly the key to success.
Young Goodman Brown was a man who was naïve to the world around him. Ever since he was a child, he had always practiced a very Godly life. Not only does he believe that everyone around him follows the same path, but he also believes that it is the only path. This naivety and innocence was taken from him by the Devil, who opened his eyes to the world of evil around him. After the pagan ceremony, which Brown attends, the Devil even states “Now are ye undeceived! Evil is the nature of mankind” (Hawthorne 9). By saying this, Hawthorne is trying to say that it is better to know the whole truth than to live a lie. By not knowing the truth about evil existing in Salem village, Brown has essentially been living a life that is not complete or accurate. This perfect and fair world that was found in the Bible is not the real world that surrounds him. When his innocence is stolen from him so abruptly, he begins to lose both his faith and stability in the world.
The Devil stealing Goodman Brown’s innocence eventually leads him to a life of despair. All throughout his life, Brown had let the Church dictate his life, and when he finds that it is all a ruse, the foundation that his life was built on is shattered. Brown also tries to turn to his wife, Faith, but when he sees that her pink ribbons fell he exclaims “My Faith is gone! There is no good on earth; and sin is but a name. Come devil! For to thee is this world given” (Hawthorne 10). The pink ribbons in Faith’s hair not only signifies Faith submitting to the Devil, but also shows the end of his childhood innocence. Now without either Faith or prayer to turn too, the narrator chose to instead go to the Devil. Even though he had been trained his whole life to be Godly, he had never learned how to fight to choose that path. Since he did not know or care to fight, he succumbed to the Devil’s wishes, for he now felt as though he needed something to hold on to, and the Devil was the only thing he could get. Because Brown did not fight to keep his Godly world and instead lets the Devil corrupt him,...

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