Character Comparison of “Young Goodman Brown” and the “Lottery”

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Character Comparison of “Young Goodman Brown” and the “Lottery”

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Mathew Speakman

English 102
Professor Katie Robinson
July 15, 2012

Thesis Statement:
In Nathaniel Hawthorne's “Young Goodman Brown” and Shirley Jackson's “The Lottery”, we are given a picture of seemingly normal people who are capable of incredible evil.

Outline:
Opening mood in both stories
a. Goodman Brown's sets out on a walk in the forest, but knows that evil awaits him.
b. The townspeople act nonchalant, but pile up stones and behave with nervous tension. Action of characters
a. The characters were influenced by their ancestors and peers, and did not follow their convictions.
b. They were unwilling to step out and do what is right.
The downfall
a. The villagers downfall was following tradition despite their reservations.
b. Young Goodman Brown's downfall was knowingly going down a path of sin. Summary: All men are predisposed to evil.

Speakman 1
Mathew Speakman L24734843
ENGL102-D05
July 15, 2012
Compare and Contrast: “Young Goodman Brown” and “The Lottery”
In Nathaniel Hawthorne's “Young Goodman Brown” and Shirley Jackson's “The Lottery”, we are given a picture of seemingly normal people who are capable of incredible evil. Both stories establish characters who, on the surface, would be taken as average people living average lives. Nothing about the characters leads the reader to believe that underneath the surface lies potential for dark deeds. Through the opening mood, choices made by the characters, and their downfall into evil behavior, Hawthorne and Jackson paint a picture of men and women predisposed to taking a dark, sinful path.

In “Young Goodman Brown”, Hawthorne places a young Puritan at the beginning of an errand that could be perceived as just another walk in the forest. It is clear that Goodman Brown and his wife realize this night could alter their future in some way. In...
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