Allegory of Young Goodman Brown

Topics: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Young Goodman Brown, Woman Pages: 4 (1256 words) Published: July 5, 2013
Allegory of “Young Goodman Brown”

The story, “Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne has a lot of allegories. It is a moral story that is told through the corruption of a religious person. Goodman Brown is a Puritan minister who lets his pride and belief in himself interfere with his relations with the community after he meets with the devil, which causes him to live the life of not knowing who to trust or believe in his own community. In the beginning when Faith, Brown's wife, asks him not to go. Brown says to her "My love and my Faith ... this one night I must tarry away from thee". (DiYanni 273) When he says his "love" and his "Faith", he is talking to his wife, but he is also talking to his "faith" to God. He is headed into the woods to meet with the Devil, and by doing so he leaves his faith in God with his wife. His pride made him feel that he can sin and meet with the Devil because of this promise that he made to himself. This promise is not without irony because when Goodman Brown came back he no longer looks at his wife with the same faith he had before.

When Brown left and met with the Devil, he declares that the reason he was late was because "Faith kept me back awhile." ( DiYanni 273) From talking to the devil Brown says that he comes from a "race of honest men and good Christians" ( DiYanni 274) . The Devil then pointed out his father and grandfather when they were flogging a woman or burning an Indian village. These words were ironic because of the bad things that they had done and it shows that he does not come from "good Christians." ( DiYanni 274) The devil continued trying to convince Brown, but he did not give in because of his wife, "Faith". And because of her, he couldn’t continue. The Devil agrees with him and tells him to turn back to prevent that "Faith should come to any harm" like the old woman in front of them on the path. ( DiYanni 274) The turning point of the story starts when Brown's is confuse about his faith because...


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Easterly, Joan Elizabeth. "Lachrymal Imagery in Hawthorn 's Young Goodman Brown",
Studies in Short Fiction, Newberry, S.C., 1991 Summer, 28:3, 339-43.
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodmam Brown". DiYanni, Robert. "Literature Reading Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and the Essay- 4th edition". The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.,1998, 272-280
Shear, Walter. "Cultural Fate and Social Freedom in Three American Short Stories",
Studies in Short Fiction, Newberry, S.C., 1992 Fall, 29:4, 543-549.
"Young Goodman Brown," in Short Stories for Students, Vol. 1 Gale Research, 1997. Reproduced in Literature Resource Center
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