Nathaniel Hawthorne is one of the greatest American authors of the nineteenth century. He published his first novel Fanshawe, in 1828. However, he is widely known for his novels The Scarlet Letter and The House of Seven Gables. His novel, The Scarlet Letter, can be analyzed from historical, psychological and feminist critical perspectives by examining his life from the past, as well as his reflections while writing The Scarlet Letter. In order to understand the book properly, it’s necessary to use these three perspectives.
Nathaniel Hawthorne was one of the most important authors in the history of American literature and the genre of Romanticism or Dark Romanticism, due to his unique style of writing and his focus upon subjects of Puritan religion and the unknown. I consider Hawthorne an important author, due to the fact that he skillfully and accurately based his fictional writings upon happenings of colonial times, was one of the first authors to display unfortunate outcomes for his characters’ immoral choices according to Puritan beliefs, and wrote of things that were considered taboo in his time, such as witchcraft, scientific innovation and experimentation. I strongly believe that Hawthorne’s influence for his writings were his Puritan ancestral background, his fascination with Puritan beliefs, and his interest in what was considered the unknown such as witchcraft and science. According to the Norton Anthology Textbook Vol. B, Nathaniel Hawthorne was “born in Salem, Massachusetts in 1804” (370). Hawthorne belonged “to a family whose ancestral roots were tied to Puritan history, with his family being among the first settlers of Massachusetts and having one of his relatives serve as a judge during the Salem witch trials” (370). Hawthorne, as a young boy, “had a particular interest in writings such as John Bunyan’s Puritan allegory The Pilgrim’s Progress, and by his mid-teens he took interest in British novelists such as Henry Fielding, Tobias Smollet, William Godwin, and Sir Walter Scott”
Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allan Poe are considered masters of American gothic fiction. They used similar gothic elements in their writing and used it to build up a sense of impending doom. Even today numerous readers enjoy, study, and discuss the gothic elements both utilized in their work. Gothic writing is a style that is concerned with the dark side of society, an evil that lies within the self. Poe and Hawthorne contributed stories which contained dark struggles between characters and society with its rules of order of the time. Gothic writing is fantasy meant to entertain despite the fact that it depicts the political and social problems
In a passage from Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The House of the Seven Gables, he reveals the complex character that is Judge Pyncheon. Hawthorne suggests that the virtuous appearance Judge Pyncheon exhibits covers the immoral reality that lies behind his lies. Hawthorne leads the reader to speculate on Judge Pyncheon’s questionable character through his skeptical tone and syntax.
The Dark Side of Judge Pyncheon in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Novel, The House of the Seven Gables
Nathaniel Hawthorne, one of America's most renowned authors, demonstrates his extraordinary talents in two of his most famed novels, The Scarlet Letter and The House of the Seven Gables. To compare these two books seems bizarre, as their plots are distinctly different. Though the books are quite seemingly different, the central themes and Hawthorne's style are closely related (Carey, p. 62). American novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne is most famous for his books THE SCARLET LETTER and THE HOUSE OF THE SEVEN GABLES, which are closely related in theme, the use of symbolism, characterization, and style.
Edgar Allan Poe and Nathaniel Hawthorne were writers of the American gothic genre. They both used the elements of horror and mystery in their writing styles, writing about the dark side of humanity and the evil that lives within the human mind. Gothic writing focuses on the dark side of humanity and both Poe and Hawthorne captured this style well in their use of themes, symbols, and narration that focused on darkness and evil with their characters fighting various psychological issues. However, Poe’s stories are told in the first person narrative and he focuses on one human psychological effect, looking at man’s thoughts from within his mind and how his behavior then affects his surroundings. He also tends to build a sense on impending doom somewhat stronger than Hawthorne. Hawthorne, on the other hand uses the third person and focuses more on how man’s thoughts and behaviors are the results of what is happening around him. His stories also tend to be more of a romantic nature than Poe’s and he tends to create stories of conflicting interpretations to share lessons of life.
Chills run down your spine as a breath of wind rushes past your frame. Incoherent whispering fills your ear due to the flowing wind… Edgar Allen Poe, one of America’s most prolific writers, wrote numerous horror stories that defined the genre for modern writing. Effort went into creating the style that he was known for, but was it constant from one story to the next? Despite differences in plot and length there are similarities of tone, setting, structure, narration, and character between two of his most famous stories, “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Fall of the House of Usher,” that allude to Poe’s true writing style.
In Herman Melville's short story, Bartleby, the Scrivener, the narrator's attitude towards Bartleby is constantly changing, the narrator's attitude is conveyed through the author's use of literary elements such as; diction-descriptive and comical, point of view-first person, and tone-confusion and sadness.
Many people enjoy the detective and crime shows, but what they may not realize is that Edgar Allan Poe was the one to pioneer this genre. For the short stories, poems, and a few books he wrote, Edgar Allan Poe is a recognized American writer. He lived in the era of westward expansion, slavery laws beginning to become an issue, and most influential to Poe, Tuberculosis(TB) was a major issue. There was not yet a cure for people with TB, in fact, there wouldn’t be a known cure for another 100 years after his life. He lost many people during his life; his father left before Poe was 3 years old, his mother died from TB when Poe was three. He moved into a foster home, but stories tell that his foster father did not like him so he struggled to find the support he needed both as a child and as a broke college student. Although many myths state that Poe was a drunkard and incapable of love, he was married. His outsiderness in his foster home likely influenced his writing, as well as his irregularity and uniqueness, and his horrid memories of how TB had taken some of his closes family. Poe’s unique literary techniques enhance his macabre writing style.
Chills slide down your spine as a breath of wind rushes past your frame. Incoherent whispering fills your ear due to the flowing wind… Edgar Allen Poe, one of America’s most prolific writers, wrote numerous horror stories that defined the genre for modern writing. Poe used a specific writing style, which is now well known, but was it constant from one story to the next? Despite differences in plot and length, there are similarities of tone, setting, structure, narration, and character between two of his most famous stories, “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Fall of the House of Usher,” that allude to Poe’s true writing style.
Hawthorne’s work takes America’s Puritan past as its subject, but The Scarlet Letter uses the material to the greatest effect. The Puritans were
Irving, Poe, and Hawthorne were arguably some of the most popular writers of the 19th century (Dincer 223; Lauter 2505). All three of them are known for their short essays and their advocacy to make writing a full-fledged and legitimate profession. Their writings show that they were hugely influenced by the Romantic Movement (romanticism); ‘a movement in art, literature, music, philosophy, politics and culture towards focusing on the individual, the subjective, and the spontaneous’ (Dincer 218). Romanticist writing “encouraged contemplation and self-awareness, direct contact with nature, and a focus on and an exploration of inner feelings” (Dincer 223). Yet, they had distinct writing style, focus, and theme. While Irving was more of a light romantic writer, a writing style characterized by optimism, Poe and Hawthorne are widely considered dark romantic Authors whose writings were characterized by pessimism that sees the world as full of dark, evil, suffering, horror, and mystery. While Irving’s writing focused more on satire and humor, Poe & Hawthorne’s writing was more about evil, crime, sin, and mystery. Moreover, Irving seem to be nostalgic aristocrat with huge ‘interest in the landscape, folklore, and the past’ (2506), whereas Poe and Hawthorne had a contrary view of the past (Liptak).
Authors truly have endless opportunities as far as creating effects is concerned. They can create effects by what they say and they also can create effects by what they do not say, or what their characters do not do. In 19th century American literature, we see the use of the latter tool in “Bartleby the Scrivener” and “Young Goodman Brown”, where authors do not give the full information about their characters and events to create the desired effects. In Herman Melville’s “Bartleby the Scrivener”, the enigmatic title character “prefers not to” do things. On the other hand, in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown”, the lead character appears to be affected by his own inability to discern the truth and thus becomes a character that
Melville, Poe, and Hawthorne all tend to focus on the darker side of humanity in their writings. In order to allow their readers to better understand their opinions, they often resort to using symbolism. Many times, those symbols take the form of darkness and light appearing throughout the story at appropriate times. A reader might wonder how light functions in the stories, and what it urges the reader to consider. If we look carefully at these appearances of light, or more likely the absence of it, we can gain some insight into what these "subversive romantics" consider to be the truth of humanity. Hawthorne uses this technique to its fullest; however, it is also very