Like discussed in class, Nathaniel Hawthorne writes more about the guilt that comes from the sin. A lot of his stories are about the sins people did in their lives or he would even make up things that people did. His main theme that he focuses on is the theme of loneliness. When a person reads stories created by Nathaniel Hawthorne, you can feel the loneliness of the characters. In a way I find that some of his stories are depressing because the way he makes some of the lives of characters. For example, “The Scarlet Letter” is filled with samples of the lonely feeling of the characters in his stories. Sometimes a person might even feel bad for them even though his works contain fiction. According to studies, there was nothing major in Hawthorne’s life that would make him a sinful person. Just like in his story “The Minister’s Black Veil” it says that everyone is not perfect and there is some kind of sin. So my point is that he was not a bad person he just liked writing about people doing bad things and committing sins. I do believe that the loneliness in his life is what brought him to talk about the loneliness in his characters lives.
Even though in his life he spent most of his time alone, he really did not base his stories off his personal life. Nathaniel was indeed a very shy, socially awkward person. This was brought forth from his lonely child hood. A lot of times he would speak to sad, lonely people he would understand them and the way they were feeling. He had a lonely childhood because his father was never around do his job. He did not have many memories of his father and when he was still young his dad ending up dying due to yellow fever. The death of his father left him to be the only guy in his household. He grew up in a household with all women, so he learned to be his own best friend because he did not have other boys to play with. He kind of kept himself isolated from the people in his life which reminds me a lot of his characters in his stories. When he finally decided to hang out with some guys he had an accident when he decided to play rugby with them. Since he completely smashed his foot and had to stay in bed, he began to be an avid reader. This is where he got a good education and started to become a writer. Once again he kept himself isolated and he used the attic in his home to get away from everyone and write.
After several years away at college and exploring some places, Hawthorne disappeared for about eleven years and had no trace of what he was doing. After the eleven years, he came out with the book, “Twice Told Tales”. He got good reviews for this and this was believed to be where the story “Young Goodman Brown” came from. He lead a lonely life up until he meet his wife and she is the one that brought him out of this lonely feeling that he had.
Hawthorne focused a lot on a character’s struggle within himself. Most of the character’s conflict was man versus himself but then his stories also contained the conflict of man versus man. A lot of the characters in Hawthorne’s stories are lonely and do not really involve themselves with other people. Many of Hawthorne’s characters do not have anyone to look to for love or even just someone to talk to about how they are feeling. Hester Prynne, Arthur Dimmesdale, Goodman Brown and Beatrice Rappaccini are just some of the characters in Hawthorne’s stories that isolate themselves from other people. There are several more that we will run into in this paper that also were lonely and kept to themselves.
The setting of his stories is just a very dark atmosphere. It can be dark like the actual night that Goodman Brown had or it can just be the dark lonely lives that the characters in “The Scarlet Letter” had. When he starts off with some of his stories a person can just get an eerie feeling that something is different about the place they are at. In Hawthorne’s...
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