20 November 2015
Young Goodman Brown: Good vs. Evil
In the short story “Young Goodman Brown”, author Nathaniel Hawthorne, probes the psychology of Puritan Salem's witchcraft frenzy to offer insights into the moral complexity of human nature, good vs. evil. The main character in this story is Goodman Brown, a good upstanding Puritan man who lived in Salem Village during the Salem Witch Trials in 1692. After emerging from the woods one dark night, he comes out a broken, sad, stern, darkly meditative, distrustful, if not desperate man. He is changed forever. But he had every right to feel that way. Who wouldn’t, after seeing and hearing what he saw that night. Everyone he loved and knew …show more content…
More than 200 people were accused of practicing witchcraft—the Devil's magic—and 20 were executed (Blumberg). It was a very uneasy time in early colonial America during this time where paranoia was at an all-time high. The author of “Young Goodman Brown”, Nathanial Hawthorne, depicts the mass hysteria of the era by casting the entire village of Salem as devil worshipers (Modugno). Hawthorne’s own great-great grand-father, John Hawthorne was one of three judges that presided over the Salem Witch Trials. Because of Hawthorne’s family connection and history, it is both an interest and conflict for Hawthorne that came out in his writings. In this story, he looks into the witchcraft frenzy and psychology of the Puritan mind. Goodman Brown is fighting in himself good vs evil. Included is the prevalence and secrecy of sin and evil alive within all people, Mr. Brown, his father, grandfather, his friends and neighbors, members of his church and even his wife Faith. Thus, ones loss of faith and self-doubt about all that is …show more content…
The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 were a very stressful time in colonial American history. During the trials there was such widespread paranoia that anyone could be accused and tried. Men and women were accused, imprisoned, and executed for witchcraft prior to and during the Salem madness. Although, the consequences of Goodman Brown’s interaction with the old man stay with him for the rest of his life. It is never fully clear whether the old man and Goodman Brown’s experiences in the forest were a dream or reality He is a broken, sad, distrustful, desperate man for good
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
Hawthorne's strongest criticisms of Puritan society show themselves in "Young Goodman Brown," "The Minister's Black Veil," and The Scarlet Letter. Hawthorne knows well that no one is free from sin,
There is a certain polarity that comes with the territory in witchcraft. In most witch trials, there was a sense of “he said, she said”, one side claiming one thing and the other disagreeing. This seemed to flow into the realm of historical thought on the matter. There is a dividing line of external and internal interpretations on the subject of the witch trials, especially including the trials in Salem. However, I argue that the line between the external and internal interpretations of the witch trials is blurred, the sides often bleeding into each
Much of what happens in Salem still resembles some things we see in society today. The word of one man can change people’s ideas and images of another without conclusive evidence. What people fear the most can sometimes bind us together, even if it is not
Arthur Miller’s portrayal of a town in the midst of a downfall “The Crucible”, tells the story of how mob mentality and hysteria can significantly influence not only individuals but the whole town. This mob mentality leads to unthoughtful acts and false accusations. Two characters who demonstrate how mob mentality can lead to the demise of Salem are Abigail and Mary Warren. As Abigail begins to be accused she is pressured to deter from the truth. While Mary Warren gets pressured by Proctor to reveal the truth about Abigail, but the overwhelming pressure from the mob makes her turn from the truth.
The Crucible, written by Arthur Miller, is a surprising story of a town plagued by the belief that witches have invaded the streets of Salem, Massachusetts. With the use of heavy dramatic irony, those that encounter the story experience frustration as the result of many innocent townsfolk being condemned to death. The readers of the story recognize the fictitious proclamations of witchcraft, but those in the town of Salem actually validate the accusations against the alleged witches. Falsely accused and falsely condemned, the “witches” are sentenced to the rope; all this occurred simply because Abigail Williams wanted to obtain the affection of the man she loved, John Proctor. Through crazy stories and expressive writing, Miller took the reader on a captivating journey back to 1692 where bizarre things befell those residing in Salem.
John Proctor, a well-respected farmer, has to make many difficult decisions that affect himself, his family, and the community of Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. The tragedy of Salem trials begins with John Proctor. He is a middle aged man, a farmer, a husband, and a father who also committed a truculent sin. Arthur Miller’s The Crucible demonstrates the effects of hidden sin on John Proctor's character, on his family, and on his community.
It explains how the community in Salem went from a peaceful town to a place of execution of innocents (Miller). Miller’s depiction of how the “witches” were chosen was a direct comparison to the blacklisting done by Sen. McCarthy around that time. Miller was one of those that were blacklisted. Miller did not protest McCarthy’s policy directly because he was fearful of being known as a Communist, which would put him out of business and potentially give him jail
In his book, “A Modest Inquiry into the Nature of Witchcraft (1702),” clergyman John Hale comes forth to confront the recent events going on at the time. Initially, Hale alludes to the questionable actions and activities of the townspeople being accused of witchcrafts, and being imprisoned as punishment. In addition, he discloses how everyone suspicious will be accused, not even young children are safe from the hands of this fate. Hale’s purpose of publishing this book was to describe the incident of the Witch Trials, and to reveal his experience of the trials, since his own wife was accused. By employing a didactic tone, Hale relays the actions of the past that targeted the Puritans and those wrongly accused of witchcrafts, so this occurrence
I founded interesting that the author noticed that the Salem village is the center of the witchcraft misbelief. By everything the evil noted in Goodman Brown; it makes sense that Hawthorne would use a Salem village for this story. In my reflection about the story, I realize that is a place where the events continuously happened because it has a different incidents or devices that are widely found in the literature and recognized as motifs appear. Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "
Shawn Jande Ms. Clancy American Literature B3 15 November 2015 The Crucible Analytical Essay Imagine, being accused of a crime you didn’t commit by your neighbors and friends out of jealousy, and desire. This is what many people in the town of Salem had to go through during the time of the Salem Witch Trials. People's motives such as: gaining and maintaining power, and aspirations for what other people had caused them to make irrational, and atrocious decisions. In The Crucible by Arthur Miller, desire and power drive characters to create chaos in the community.
In the text, “Young Goodman Brown”, Brown’s gloom and withdrawal is justified by the shocking events in the forest. This is because, during his time in the forest, be bears witness to supernatural events in which he sees that many people he knows from the path of god are in reality on the path of the devil. For Brown to be justified in his feelings, the events in question must be deemed events that were real. To start, when Brown first exited the woods after witnessing the ritual, he heard Deacon Gookin, a man at the ritual, praying.
The Danger of A Walk With the Devil: The Consequence of Sin and Guilt in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown” As Canadian author William Paul Young once said, “sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside.” In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short story “Young Goodman Brown,” Goodman Brown’s life and entire being is demolished by his sins, never to return to what it once was. Through a guilt-filled journey of sin, Goodman Brown struggles with his faith, his grasp on reality, but most importantly, life as he knows it. By losing everything, Young Goodman Brown suffers the ultimate punishment of lifelong pain and suffering.
The Perspective of Freedom Have you ever thought about the concept of freedom? Freedom is a point of perspective and not a point of a state of being. This can be seen in the story comparison in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Young Goodman Brown and Phillis Wheatley’s To the University of Cambridge, in New-England.
Conversely, Hawthorne did not trust man at all. He was a Transcendental Pessimist. He believed man was corrupt, and following his intuition would fail him in life. One of Hawthorne’s short stories, “Young Goodman Brown”, portrays the tale of a young Christian man who wanders into the forest and witnesses a witch-meeting that involves some of the people Goodman Brown thought to be some of the holiest people he knew: the church Deacon, the pastor, and even Brown’s own wife, Faith. After the witch-meeting incident in the woods, Brown wonders whether he witnessed the witch meeting, or if it was a creation of his own imagination: “quote”.
The desires of humanity often reflect the temptations residing in the heart’s depths. Evil’s lure is a strong pull felt by all, regardless of the appearance put on through the conscious mind. In literature, temptation is explored thoroughly, especially in the short story, “Young Goodman Brown”. “The tale becomes in great part, thus, a record of temptation” (Pualits 578-579). The author of “Young Goodman Brown”, Nathaniel Hawthorne, was born in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1804.