Young Goodman Brown: Symbolism
In " Fresh Goodman Brown”, a short tale by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the topic of confliction towards good and evil is consistently brought up initiating tension and a feeling of mysteriousness to the visitor. The theme of evil vs . good can be raised through symbols just like faith and the dark dismal woods, which often creates a suspenseful mood over the story allowing for the audience to question the validity of witchcraft. Goodman Brown starts out as a gentleman with solid faith before he begins to venture in the woods. Hawthorne wittingly uses Goodman Brown's wife, Hope, as a mark to Goodman's own faith throughout the history. Goodman's uberrima fides towards his wife is expressed early on in the tale when he says, " My love and my own Faith” (276) as a answer his wife's anxiety. Though Goodman is referring to his wife's brand, it is also an implication of his very own faith. His wife is portrayed being a pure and innocent woman, as is Goodman's own hope. Because Goodman's faith is supposedly natural and untarnished, his belief in his solid faith justifies his " haste upon [this] present evil purpose” (276) to venture the dark contaminated woods. He can fully aware of the guilty acts he could be about to make yet he believes that his real and strong faith are certain to get him back home unsullied. Goodman, however , quickly dismisses his faith if he starts to encounter more character types of the evils in the timber. The woods, in this case, symbolize Goodman's fear of the validity of witchcraft as well as the embodiment of his suspicions and darker feelings he has towards things he never thought about before. Each time he is subjected to something he did not expect, he seems to lose a bit more of his hope. When he " sat himself on the stump of a woods, and declined to go virtually any further” (281), it is a crystal clear indication for the audience that he is starting to lose his faith to the evil forest. In a way, in a bad neighborhood symbolize the outside world –a dark place in which lies and disappointments of sorts control....
Cited: Hawthorne, Nathaniel. " Young Goodman Brown. " Tales and Sketches. New York: Library of America, 1982. 276-289. Print out.
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