Negative Consequences of Learning the Truth, in Hawthorn’s Young Goodman Brown and Chopin’s Desiree’s Baby

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Whoever said the truth will set you free must not have read the works of Nathaniel Hawthorn and Kate Chopin. It is in Hawthorn’s story “Young Goodman Brown” and Chopin’s “Desiree’s Baby” that learning the truth is not liberating but leads to isolation and bitterness because the truth is too much to comprehend. In “Young Goodman Brown” Brown’s experience of the satanic group in the woods causes him to discover part of his community’s identity with evil and this causes his withdrawal of himself from the community because of his lack of trust. “Desiree’s Baby” problem deals with Armand’s unwillingness to accept the fact that his mother was African American, which leads him to resentful acts and his inability to accept responsibility for his…show more content…
It is this connection that Brown feels is being attacked and questioned. The use of the words “loathful brotherhood” shows Brown’s connection to these people, and his resentment towards them because he feels as though his trust in others has been shattered. Hawthorn’s naming of Brown’s wife “Faith” has a duel mean. Brown’s “Faith” represents his spiritual faith along with his loving wife who he characterizes as being “a blessed angel on earth,” (526). When Brown exclaims “My Faith is gone!” (531) not only is Brown referring to the fact that he believes he may have lost his dear wife, but he loses his spiritual faith and the faith in others as more is unfolded on his journey to the communion. When he encounters his wife the next day, unsure as to whether or not the previous nights events occurred he “looked sternly and sadly into her face, and passed on without a greeting,” (534). This experience Brown had transforms him from being a man strong to “a stern, a sad, a darkly meditative, a distrustful, if not a desperate man,” (535). Chopin show’s that Armand is unable to welcome the knowledge that his mother “belongs to the race that is cursed with the brand of slavery,” (250). Not only is Armand unable to accept this fact but he is not will to take responsibility for his actions resulting in his knowledge of his heritage. Desiree seemed to be the perfect solution for Armand’s secret since her background is a mystery and she has such
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