Young Goodman Brown Symbolism Analysis

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The Use of Symbolism in Young Goodman Brown In the short story, “Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne symbolism and imagery are used in many ways, reading the story once is only scratching the surface. Hawthorne sculpts a story by tying intricate details together to create something that will absorb the reader. Through scenery, Biblical references, and even names and colors, Hawthorne has proven himself as a literary genius. Imagery used by Hawthorne starts off in the first sentence of the story with the use of scenery. In the beginning of the story, the scene is set by the author telling us that Young Goodman Brown and his wife Faith are in the streets of Salem, “came forth at sunset into the street at Salem Village,” (Hawthorne…show more content…
Faith’s involvement in the story begins when she is saying goodbye to her husband, Goodman Brown. The pink ribbons on her cap are said to be played with by the wind, adding a meaning of purity and innocence to the story and Faith’s character. Faith’s pink ribbons are to surely to represent the current state of Young Goodman Brown’s mind; pure and innocent. While Faith herself is there to show his commitment to his religious faith, which he starts off by leaving, even saying that “Faith kept me back a while,”(1) in reference to his journey, perhaps meaning that his loyalty to his new wife and God stopped him from beginning this condemning, treacherous journey. Young Goodman Brown thinks that Faith is pure and will always be there no matter what he does, he believes that she will be there after his sinful endeavour and he can “cling to her skirts and follow her to heaven”,(1) which further proves that Faith is a character with more than one significance. At the climax of the story, the innocent, pure Faith that we are initially introduced to is exposed, as Faith is taking part in the blasphemous practices Goodman Brown finds himself in the middle of. Goodman Brown’s Faith is gone, symbolized by Faith’s pink ribbons floating down from the sky to be caught in a tree. Goodman Brown, heartbroken, is then depicted to be crying out, “My Faith is gone!”(7) which is truly a further
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