Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Minister’s Black Veil” begins on a Sunday morning “Sabbath-day” before church in the small town of Milford MA. The sexton rings the bell calling all the parishioners forward for church. The church begins to fill as any normal Sunday although this turns out to be anything but an ordinary day. When it becomes time to go before the congregation Reverend Mr. Hooper walks into church. The sexton and the entire congregation is stunned because today Reverend Hooper enters the church with a black veil covering his face.
Sacrifice-an act of giving up something valued for the sake of something else regarded as more important or worthy. Everyone will eventually sacrifice something, some more than others, yet those sacrifices will often lead to achievement. In the short story, “The Minister’s Black Veil,” Nathaniel Hawthorne illustrates how heartbreaking details, emotional imagery, and sorrowful symbolism demonstrate sacrifice and gain. Hawthorne’s use of heartbreaking details shows how love is sometimes sacrificed for the teaching of a lesson, only to be regretted in the end. Hooper’s love, Elizabeth, “ loses a certain relationship with the person she loves, only to gain a different relationship with him later.”
In the short story, "The Minister's Black Veil", American Romanticism characteristics are typical with examples like Mr. Hooper and his black veil or Elizabeth and her curiosity. In addition, Mr. Hooper tries to be nice to everyone in the town but they can't take him seriously because of his black veil. The black veil symbolizes secret sin and the darkness of humanity. It also symbolizes the secret sin that all people carry in their hearts.
The first thing I learned was how keeping a secret from everyone destroys a person. “This feeble and most sensitive of spirits could do neither, yet continually did one thing or another, which intertwined, in the same inextricable knot, the agony of heaven-defying guilt and vain repentance” (Page 144). This quote is showing how Dimmesdale’s guilt and secret is destroying him, and turning him into a madman of sorts. I think this lesson still hold true in our society today. A majority of people have a very strong conscious, and when they are guilty of something, or they have a major secret and they don’t tell anyone, it will tend to destroy the person.
Compare and contrast the meaning and style of “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” and “The Minister’s Black Veil.” How does each author convey his meaning to the reader? Which author’s style is more effective and why? Puritan religion is adequately portrayed in both Jonathan Edwards’ sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”, and Nathaniel Hawthorne’s story, “The Minister’s Black Veil”.
Surly is defined as being “bad-tempered and unfriendly” (Google definition). This is the perfect definition for the curly-haired antagonist of Of Mice and Men. Most will say there is no justification behind Curley's hostility. He is rude to Lennie upon meeting him, is controlling over his wife, he attacks Lennie, does not mourn his wife's death, and arranges for Lennie's murder. There is speculation that Curley is an ill tempered guy and deserves punishment, yet upon further analysis there is some humanity or reasoning behind Curley's actions.
The central themes of The Minister's Black Veil by Nathaniel Hawthorne is presented with a parable, a simple story illustrating a moral or religious lesson that makes the truth have a deeper meaning and easy to understand. Having to read both Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allen Poe was very interesting but, I decided to choose Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Minister's Black Veil" because Nathaniel's story was more interesting, mysterious, and easier to understand than The House of Usher in my opinion since Nathaniel's character, Mr. Hooper, was mysterious throughout the whole story and had many different themes to his parable that involves his veil that can symbolize many reasons. There is an American Romanticism characteristic in this parable.
Fatal flaws have been shown in works of literature throughout the centuries, causing the destruction of many characters. In the novel, The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, three of the main characters each have a fatal flaw. The novel, set in Puritan Boston between 1642-1679, tells the story of Hester Prynne through third person narrative. Hester begins her journey in the novel when she is brought from jail for her punishment in having an affair with someone in the town, resulting in her pregnancy. Her husband, Roger Chillingworth, who she believed dead, sought out revenge against the unknown father of Hester’s child.
The clergy’s actions during the first scaffold scene demonstrate the hypocrisy of Hume’s idea of suspension of justice regarding the sinner. Upon being coerced into extorting Hester’s repentance, the young minister beseeches her to “name thy fellow-sinner and fellow-sufferer... What can thy silence do for him, except it tempt him--yea, compel him, as it were--to add hypocrisy to sin?” (Hawthorne, Ch. 3). Although equally guilty, Dimmesdale’s position within the theocracy enables him to transfer the responsibility of confessing to his lover.
“First impressions are powerful and rich sources of information about other people, and studies have demonstrated that they predict performance in numerous domains.” (Ambady & Rosenthal, 1993) I always considered myself to be highly intelligent, conscientious, psychologically well-adjusted, and accurate in my overall judgments; however, I embarrassingly admit, a time when my personality judgment of hiring a candidate for employment based on religious inferences was an epic mistake. Debra (pseudonym) was the target of my judgment and charisma was the trait that I thought I could judge with some degree of accuracy. Many Christian leaders wrestle with whether they should hire Christians in their workplace. In 1 Corinthians 5 Paul wrote, “I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister in Christ but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunk or a swindler.