Journey Motif

Topics: Young Goodman Brown, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Allegory Pages: 2 (468 words) Published: April 28, 2005
In literature, the Journey is often a metaphor for discovery. The journey motif is used in Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner." It is also shown in Hawthorne's "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" and "Young Goodman Brown." In these stories, each main character changes sometime between the beginning and the end of the story. In addition, religion plays a part in each of these stories. Typically, in journey literature the hero encounters several obstacles that he or she must overcome. In Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner," the Mariner shows negativity. The Mariners moral vision is so impaired that his comparisons are persistently pessimistic. This pessimism is seen repeatedly in the similes that he uses. He describes life-in-death whose skin is "as white as leprosy". When the ship sinks, the Mariner stated "The many men, so beautiful!/ And they all dead did lie;/ And a thousand thousand slimy things/ Lived on; and so did I". By this, the Mariner shows the beginning of his attitude change. At this point in the poem, the Mariner's fate begins to change when he is rescued by a hermit. The Mariner endures tremendous physical agony and starts to recognize the importance of all living things after his lowest point, the curse. An example of this is when the spell breaks at the point in which the snakes are blessed. As he regains a sense of beauty, the Mariner observes the snakes and realizes how beautiful they are. He begins to see things brightly and the mariner's comparisons and references are less pessimistic and dark. Hawthorne's "My Kinsman, Major Molineux," Robin's Journey is clear. Robin is on a journey to find Major Molineux and it is his first journey to town. It is ironic about his shrewd youth; as he continues his journey, he becomes shrewd. His journey is an acquisition of learning, especially since he only has the education of a youth. When Robin goes into the tavern, he is guided by a murmur of voices. He is confident...
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