Nathaniel Hawthorne: A Brief Biography

1277 WordsJun 16, 20186 Pages
On July 4, 1804, an author by the name of Nathaniel Hawthorne was born (Meltzer). As Hawthorne grew, he began to develop a view of himself as “the obscurest man in American letters.” Through the use of popular themes such as isolation, guilt, and earthly imperfection, Hawthorne was able to involve much of his life and ancestral past in his work to answer his own political and religious wonders (“Nathaniel”). Hawthorne successfully “confronts reality rather than evading it” in many of his stories (Clendenning). Due to yellow fever, Hawthorne’s father passed away at an early age. Because of this incident, his mother went into a deep depression and rarely showed Hawthorne the love and affection a young boy hungers for, thus affecting…show more content…
Again, Hawthorne was seen using his ancestral past as an influence for his writings. Religiously, Hawthorne suffered. The reader obviously noticed this in “The Minister’s Black Veil.” Hawthorne wrote, “As he prayed, the veil lay heavily” (Arvin 12). This quote showed the reader that a weight needed to be lifted off Hawthorne’s shoulders. Hawthorne wrote about his struggles with his faith by using the tone word “heavily” to show that Hawthorne may have felt like his prayers were pointless because he was so low in his Puritan faith. The summary of “The Minister’s Black Veil” made it obvious that the minister had a secret. The minister could possibly represent Hawthorne himself. Hawthorne wrote, “The subject had reference to secret sin and those sad mysteries which we hide from our nearest and dearest, and would fain conceal from our own consciousness, even forgetting that the Omniscient can detect them” (Arvin 13). Heading back towards the theme of guilt and isolation, Hawthorne was possibly hiding something while isolated in his writing room. Hawthorne may have felt guilty for whatever it was he was hiding because he knows “the Omniscient” still knows what he had done no matter how hard he tried to hide it. Religion is not the only area Hawthorne suffered in. There was much anxiety in his marriage. Because Hawthorne enjoyed writing about his life, this anxiety was visible in “Rappaccini’s
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