The Minister's Black Veil By Nathaniel Hawthorne

1191 Words5 Pages

How willing are you to give up your whole life and reputation to help others by proving a point? In “The Minister 's Black Veil” Nathaniel Hawthorne writes about a minister named Mr. Hooper who changes his whole life to try to show the people in his congregation that they are living in sin and need to change their ways. The author Nathaniel Hawthorne was born around the time when Puritan life was the norm and everyone was a Puritan. Hawthorne also admired his ancestor’s ways and their lifestyles as much as he felt the need for people to have the freedom to strongly disagree about something (Grant). Grant says, “ It is this rich combination of his ancestral soil, a strong sense of the richness of the American past, and that moral quality” which …show more content…

Hooper is sacrificing his life by ruining his reputation of his as a minister and as a person. People start to look at Mr. Hooper as a different and changed person; this is shown when the congregation says, “He has changed himself into something awful, only by hiding his face” (Hawthorne 176). The congregation also mentions “ The black veil, though it covers only our pastor’s face, throws its whole person, and makes him ghost-like from head to foot” (Hawthorne 178). Mr. Hooper’s veil that he wore was seen as if it took over his whole demeanor and made him into a whole new person. Mr. Hooper’s finance, Elizabeth, knew that people would view him differently and that the veil was not a good look for his reputation. Elizabeth tries to explain this to Mr. Hooper when she says, “But what if the world will not believe that it is the type of an innocent sorrow … Beloved and respected as you are, there may be whispers that you hide your face under the consciousness of secret sin. For the sake of your holy office, do away this scandal!” (Hawthorne 182) People are starting to not want to be around Mr. Hooper anymore because of the vibe that is given off when he approaches. At the funeral, everyone feels like his demeanor is only acceptable for a funeral based on the feelings that are brought to others when he is around (Denies 179+). Denies also mentions “The Hooper-- Hooper before the veil-- had been adored on such occasions for he had always exhibited “a placid cheerfulness,” but …show more content…

Mr.Hooper wears the veil because he knows good will come out of it in the end. Mr.Hooper dedicates his whole life to this one calling. By Hooper putting on the veil he is accepting that he will never be able to participate in any joys in the world and he will have to keep an image that is appropriate with the black veil (Montbriand). He essentially gave up his whole life for this one purpose. Mr.Hooper lets his fiance hurt because she has lost the man she loves just because he will not take off the one thing that could keep them happy and together (Stouck 559+). Hooper gives up his fiance this which shows that this veil and the reason for him wearing the veil was very important to him. Mr.Hooper knows that this veil will have him sacrifice a lot and that it will be really hard on him but it will be worth it. When Denies is trying to explain this he says, “On the one hand, he is preparing for eternal happiness the “time” in which sacrifice itself will have been sacrificed when earthly weeds will fall away as so much waste”. Denies also says, “On the other hand, he knows that this preparation itself requires sacrifice, which is to say that it repetition of negativity”(179+). He is explaining how Hooper was prepared to sacrifice everything and he knew that this was the only way. Mr.Hooper 's whole life changed when he put on the veil and there was nothing that he could do about it but let

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