Symbolism InThe Minister's Black Veil And Young Goodman Brown

Decent Essays

When the average person pictures evil, the image that comes to mind is usually one of a cruelly-featured, sneering man mischievously twirling his mustache as he inflicts misery on his fellow humans. But, evil comes in many different forms, and everyone has at least a little bit of evil inside them. Nathaniel Hawthorne is very passionate about this topic and choses to express it through symbolism for the most part. Both “The Minister’s Black Veil” and “Young Goodman Brown” exhibit these literary devices multiple times throughout them. In “The Minister’s Black Veil” the main character (The Minister) begins to wear this black veil around all the time. He gets a ton of backlash from the citizens around him but continues to wear it until his death. On the other hand, “Young Goodman Brown” is about a man who begins to see the true evil in all of his close friends and even family. They all take part in this Satanic meeting very secretively and show that they worship the devil. Both stories are very dark and have many examples of different types of literary devices. Through Hawthorne's use of symbolism, he makes it extremely evident to the reader that humans are inherently evil and sinful.
Hawthorne specifically uses symbolism in “Young Goodman Brown” when he mentions the staff. This particular staff belongs to the devil and it is offered to Brown in an attempt to tempt him into doing something against his morals. The devil tells Brown, “’Sit here and rest yourself for a while; and

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