Archetypes In Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

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“Young Goodman Brown” is a fictional story that carries a great deal of realistic and spiritual meaning. The story was written by Nathaniel Hawthorne in 1835 and it has since been read, as well as studied, by a multitude of scholars. In the process of evaluating a text, most critics take time to study individual characters. Carl Jung completely transformed how characters are viewed; Jung claimed that all writers form stories with characters that fall into universal archetypes. The archetype that receives the most attention is the hero, which is the main character of the story. If the claim holds true that every story has a hero, is the main character in “Young Goodman Brown” a true hero? With an understanding of what heroes do and how they are defined, it can be confidently stated that Goodman Brown meets the qualifications. …show more content…

Joseph Campbell did a great deal of research regarding Jung’s archetypes, and the characteristics that define a traditional hero. Campbell claims that a traditional hero is often orphaned, or in other ways separated from their family. In most stories, there is an inciting incident which propels the hero on a quest; Campbell adds that this quest is typically dangerous. There is a maiden present in the hero’s life who inspires him along the way. The hero will go through a threshold in their quest; the hero may not go back once they pass the threshold. A hero usually consults a wise old man or a great mother to provide knowledge to them. Lastly, Joseph Campbell made it clear that a traditional hero is changed after the completion of the

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