Hawthorne's Pride of Intellect

Essay by sphinxHigh School, 12th gradeA+, December 1996

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Hawthorns Pride of Intellect

Many of Hawthorne's characters wrap themselves in a pride of intellect. The characters

become victims of their pride and consequently suffer. Goodman Brown, from 'Young Goodman

Brown' and Hooper, from 'The Minister's Black Veil' are two characters that suffer from a pride

of intellect. Their pride causes them similar problems and they end up living similar lives, although

they came from different backgrounds.

Hooper and Goodman Brown both become isolated from society. Hooper had a

revelation, and he feels that he truly understands human nature and sin. However, he believes that

he is above everybody else because he has this understanding. This is what causes the major

separation between Hooper and society. After Hooper dawns the veil he can no longer function or

act as a normal person, because of this feeling of superiority. His perception of an ultimate human

isolation leaves him the man most isolated in what Hawthorne describes as that saddest of all

prisons, his own heart .

. . '(The Minister's Black Veil,228). The veil affects all parts of his life,

his fiance leaves him and he can no longer relate to his congregation the same way. 'As a result of

wearing the veil, Hooper becomes a man apart, isolated from love and sympathy, suspected and

even feared by his congregation'(Minister's Black Veil, 228). Goodman Brown suffers the same

fate because he also has a feeling of superiority over the rest of the village. He attains this feeling

after he sees all the people that he though were good and pure participating in satanic rituals in the

forest. He looses all faith in the community and feels as though he is above them because he was

able to resist the devil. The lack or trust trusting that Goodman...