"Young Goodman Brown"
Nathaniel Hawthorne's short story, "Young Goodman Brown," depicts the internal conflicts of the young, naÃÂ¯ve, Puritan, Goodman Brown. Hawthorne aptly named his characters, to convey their innocent nature. Brown and Faith are newlyweds enjoying a happy life in a small Salem village of Puritan New England in the 1690's. However, Brown decides he must go on a journey of self-discovery; a journey he does not want to take but feels he must, to prove he is worthy of God's grace.
On the darkest of nights, Brown travels down a path, deep into the unknown dangers of the forest. Brown's nighttime trek will prove if his true passion is in the purity, of the village or the darkness and evil that calls to him from the woods.
The youngster is unprepared for what he learns when a stranger joins him on the path. Brown feels the old man is of 'evil origin' when he feels the pull of temptation.
Yet, Brown's faith remains strong. He rejects the evil one's advances until he views his catechism teacher as a willing participant in the night's activities. Even though his confidence is wavering, Brown clings to his faith. Regardless, the farther he travels, the stronger the temptations grow.
The stranger, whom Brown now believes to be the devil, claims that he is well acquainted with some of Brown's family and friends. Brown sees, or has visions of, his relatives and leaders of the community and their associations with evil. This revelation forces Brown to trust what the stranger tells him. Brown is convinced that the presence of these people, in the deep forest at night, is proof that the stranger's tales of wickedness are true.
Young Goodman Brown's faith is nearly destroyed by the revelation that everyone...