Pride In Hawthorne's Young Goodman Brown

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Set as a common aspect within each story, the complex passages of sin and life later yield the protagonists’ sudden realization of the imminent nature of life and suppression of their initial pride. When Goodman Brown embarks on a journey through the woods, he initially encounters an old man, who closely resembles Brown himself. Goodman Brown, alongside the second traveller, sets off on a “dreary road, darkened by all the gloomiest trees of the forest” (Hawthorne 1), represented as the principal setting and symbol of sin’s path. The atmosphere is instantly set as the path is illustrated “as lonely as could be” (1) with a “peculiarity in such a solitude, that the traveller knows not who may be concealed by the innumerable trunks and the…show more content…
The setting appears to symbolize the world outside Puritan Salem, and thus, outside Goodman Brown’s capacity. The forest’s ambience triggers his acknowledgment of the true portrayal of life, embodying his fears and suspicions of what truly stands out of the norm. The path Goodman Brown journeys upon not only represents an embodiment of his fears and angst, but also as a passage of unavoidable sin and duality that later becomes the epitome of his pride’s destruction and ultimate recognition of the nature of life. During his solitary expedition through the woods, Goodman Brown also faces numerous Puritan citizens whom he originally assumes to be solely pure, such as Goody Cloyse and Deacon Gookin. He later realizes that the journey he has commenced upon is a ceremonial form of a sinful congregation; by encountering his fellow citizens, he fully acknowledges the nature of life. However, despite the fact that he journeys along the path as well, he cannot admit to his actions and adamantly presumes that he is the only one unscathed of sin as “he felt a loathful brotherhood by the sympathy of all that was wicked in his…show more content…
By doing so, he gravely begins to reject others both physically and spiritually, later making him “a stern, sad, a darkly meditative, a distrustful, if not a desperate man” whose “dying hour was gloom” (12). Goodman Brown’s refusal to affirm to his actions in the woods and the duality of life that it represents leads to an aura of darkness that dominates him, inducing his inability to live charitably with the other citizens of the town. In spite of his awareness of sin’s brutal nature, Brown still feels that he is innocent of sin, causing him to see only evil in other people rather than in himself; this consequently prompts a death filled with gloom and melancholy. Similarly, in “Masque of the Red Death,” the setting of Prince Prospero’s abbey also symbolizes a pathway of life. As a means to physically isolate himself and his people from the Red Death, Prince Prospero uses his idealistic abbey to hold a grand masquerade. Within the boundaries of his abbey comprises a twisting passage of multiple colored rooms, as described to have “a sharp turn at every twenty or thirty yards” (Poe 2). Starting “at the eastern extremity” (2) and ending at the west, the colors correspondingly progress from a “vividly blue” shade to a black shade with “a deep
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