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Hawthorne's Rejection of Puritan Values
Words: 1337 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 68867437
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Hawthorne clearly stepped away from the Puritan ethic by consistently alluding to the existence of the earthly supernatural. Though this was a fear of the Puritans, clearly it was associated with Satan and possession of the living. In Hawthorne's works the supernatural was associated with less grand sources, such as those seen in Young Goodman Brown. (Hoeltje 39-40) Hawthorne allows his characters to explore concepts that would have been those deemed heretical within the Puritan settings of the works.

In The Birth-Mark, Hawthorne associates the active expulsion of character traits of humanity clearly results in the death of the whole.

The line of divergence in "The Birth Mark" is indicated by its name. e all have our birth-marks, -- traits of character, which may be temporarily suppressed, or relegated to the background, but which cannot be eradicated and are certain to reappear at unguarded moments, or on…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel." The Columbia Encyclopedia. 6th ed. 2004.

Emmett, Paul J. "Narrative Suppression: Sin, Secrecy and Subjectivity in "The Minister's Black Veil." Journal of Evolutionary Psychology 25.1-2 (2004): 101+. Questia. 16 Jan. 2005  http://www.questia.com/ .

Gartner, Matthew. "The Scarlet Letter' and the Book of Esther: Scriptural Letter and Narrative Life." Studies in American Fiction 23.2 (1995): 131+. Questia. 16 Jan. 2005

Hawthorne Literary Symbolism and Hawthorne's
Words: 993 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 18679823
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The only material similarity between Prynne's scarlet "badge" and Faith's pink ribbons is that both are made of cloth and adorn some type of clothing, i.e., Faith's ribbons are part of her cap while Prynne's "badge" is sewn into her dress as needlework.

The reader is first introduced to Prynne's "badge" in Chapter Two of the Scarlet Letter when she emerges from jail -- "On the breast of her gown, in fine red cloth, surrounded with an elaborate embroidery and fantastic flourishes of gold thread, appeared the letter a." Upon being led to her "place of punishment" for committing adultery with Arthur Dimmesdale, all eyes are immediately drawn to the scarlet "A" which "had the effect of a spell, taking (Hester) out of the ordinary relations with humanity and enclosing her in a sphere by herself" (ell, 163-164). Obviously, this scarlet emblem upon Hester's dress seems to emit a life…

Bibliography

Bell, Millicent, Ed. Nathaniel Hawthorne: Collected Novels and Short Stories. New York: The Library of America, 1983.

Richardson, Robert D., Jr. "Ralph Waldo Emerson." Dictionary of Literary Biography. Vol. 59: "American Literary Critics and Scholars, 1800-1850." Ed. John W. Rathburn. Farmington Hills, MI: Gale Research, Inc., 1987, 108-129.

Hawthorne vs Poe Story Comparison
Words: 661 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 98055533
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Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allen Poe may be counted among the leading American writers to have defined contemporary literature. These personalities significantly elevated short story standards, banking of every literary element in order for strengthening their styles. However, the two utilized these tools rather differently. On the one hand, Hawthorne delved into and discovered human nature’s realities, while, on the other, Poe examined the hearts of people by critiquing their thinking, values, and actions. Both were able to emerge successful when it came to the exploration of short story details, employing words for developing a vibrant world for their readers. Via the genres of gothic and romance fiction, Poe and Hawthorne have effectively widened the horizons of readers, replacing unexciting, old stories with intriguing ones that deal with an enigmatic human reality as well as the inevitable realities underlying human nature.

The novels and short tales of fiction teem with…

Hawthorne Nature and Female Victimization
Words: 1321 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 58192047
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Personal Responsibility: "Rappaccini's Daughter" versus "The Birthmark"

Both Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Rappaccini's Daughter" and "The Birthmark" contain similar themes of the dangers of human pride, specifically male pride, and arrogance. In both stories, male figures in the name of science explicitly tamper with the fate of the women in their care. In the case of Rappaccini, the sorcerer-like figure slowly poisons his own daughter so she cannot come into contact with anyone without poisoning them herself. In the case of "The Birthmark," the scientist Aylmer is obsessed with removing his wife Georgina's birthmark to the point that it kills her. The blindness of these men to their own ambition causes them to destroy what they ostensibly wish to save.

"The Birthmark" begins with an exchange between Aylmer and his wife that underlines the fact that his obsession with the birthmark is solely his own and has little to do with his…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Birthmark,"1-10

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Rappaccini's Daughter," 1-20.

Hawthorne Hooper Suddenly Dons a Mysterious Black
Words: 1343 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 72828098
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Hawthorne

Hooper suddenly dons a mysterious black veil "which entirely concealed his features, except the mouth and chin, but probably did not intercept his sight, further than to give a darkened aspect to all living and inanimate things," (Hawthorne). This "gloomy" veil is the central symbol of Hawthorne's short story, "The Minister's Black Veil." As with other Hawthorne stories, "The Minister's Black Veil" offers a poignant critique against hyper-religiosity in ultra-Puritan New England. Hawthorne shows that a Christian obsession with the theme of sin has been taken to an extreme, evident in Hooper's mentally deranged methodology. By wearing the veil continuously in her personal and public affairs, Hooper alienates himself from those who care about him, including the community members who used to count on him. On the other hand, guilt-ridden members of the community view Hooper's veil as a sign that the minister is ultra-pious and therefore capable of…

Works Cited

Carnochan, W.B. "The Minister's Black Veil": Symbol, Meaning, and the Context of Hawthorne's Art." Nineteenth-Century Fiction. Vol. 24, No. 2 (Sep., 1969), pp. 182-192

Colacurcio, Michael J. "Parson Hooper's Power of Blackness: Sin and Self in "The Minister's Black Veil" Prospects. Vol. 5. Oct 1980.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Minister's Black Veil." Retrieved online:  http://www.eldritchpress.org/nh/mbv.html 

Newberry, Frederick. "The Biblical Veil: Sources and Typology in Hawthorne's 'The Minister's Black Veil,'" Texas Studies in Literature and Language. Vol. 31, No. 2, Nineteenth-Century Fiction (SUMMER 1989), pp. 169-195

Nathanial Hawthorne The Ministers Black
Words: 935 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 98930443
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Mr. Hooper states that he is no better or worse than the other members of his community, who he believes also harbor secret sins, even though they act as though they do not. The anti-Transcendentalist concept, like Transcendentalism, suggests that society harbors a false surface, but it believes this is due to an innate sinfulness of humankind, not because human beings outside of society are better.

Anti-transcendentalists believed that humans are hypocrites, and removing social constrictions will not heal the sins of humanity. Mr. Hooper, unlike Emerson's joyful sense of solitude in nature also experiences his isolation as a penance. He chooses to punish himself, not to gain a more positive sense of his inner self, but to fully understand and apprehend its sinfulness. Another key concept of Transcendentalism is the idea that a person's inner life is more important than their social, outer life. However, in Mr. Hooper's estimation,…

Works Cited

Brulatour, Meg. "Heaven on Earth: The Legacy of 19th Century Transcendentalism as an Ecumenical Philosophy of Nature." American Transcendentalist Web 1999

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Minister's Black Veil." E-text available from  http://etext.virginia.edu/etcbin/toccer-new2?id=HawMini.sgm&images=images/modeng&data=/texts/english/modeng/parsed&tag=public&part=1&division=div1

Symbbolism in Hawthorne's Young Goodman
Words: 1212 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Thesis Paper #: 35915928
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hen first offered the snakelike staff, Young Goodman Brown refuses to accept it although his does later accept a new staff instead. This symbolizes his simultaneous fear of evil and his temptation to embrace it (Miller, 1991). The staff itself likely represents a tool of evil (Miller, 1991). Similarly, the way that Young Goodman Brown takes the first steps toward the evil ceremony also symbolizes the inevitability of the fall of human beings from goodness to evil when the choice is presented to them. In that regard, the flaming alter also symbolism a baptism of fire or formal entrance into the world of evil in much the same way that baptism represents the acceptance of God and all that is good and virtuous (Franklin, 1994).

Young Goodman Brown's response to encountering Goody Cloyse and realizing that she is already acquainted with the Devil is symbolic of his disappointment in realizing…

Works Cited

Arvin, Newton. Hawthorne. Russell & Russell, 1961.

Fogle, Richard H. Hawthorne's Fiction: The Light and the Dark. University of Oklahoma Press, 1952.

Franklin, Benjamin V. "Goodman Brown and the Puritan Catechism." Esquire, Vol.

40 (1994): 67-88.

Goodman Brown of Hawthorne's Young
Words: 312 Length: 1 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 28309486
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Both Elisa Allen and Goodman Brown suggest that sexual tension might be at the root of their conflict.

Allen arguably deals with her pain more constructively than Brown does. Brown becomes bitter as a result of the conflict he perceives in his heart. Moreover, Brown fails to ground himself in reality. Questioning whether or not the forest vision was real, Brown neglects to contemplate its value even as a dream. Learning that he does have longings to break free from the social conventions tying him down to the rigid and conformist Puritan society would have helped Brown come to terms with the Faith he does genuinely seek. Elisa cries but deep down knows that a simple dinner out with her husband is as much freedom as she can have while still savoring the joy of…

Emerson & Hawthorne Ralph Waldo
Words: 382 Length: 1 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 49619515
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The deep, gloomy forest holds the key to the freedom of the people: here they learn to be themselves again. In the midst of nature, "the yellow leave will show no vestige of the white man's tread." (Hawthorne, (http://www.online-literature.com/hawthorne/scarletletter).oth writers belong to the transcendentalist movement and so their views resemble each other: Emerson's nature is a reflection of the human spirit, while Hawthorne's forest reveals people's true character.

ibliography

Emerson, R.W.: The American Scholar. Retrieved June 2007, at http://www.bartleby.com/5/101.html

Emerson, R.W.: Nature. Retrieved June 2007, at http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl302/texts/emerson/nature-emerson-a.html#Chapter%20I

Hawthorne, Nathaniel: The Scarlet Letter. Retrieved June 2007, at http://www.online-literature.com/hawthorne/scarletletter

Taylor, Judd: Man Thinking: The Nature of Emerson's American Scholar, March 23, 1999. Retrieved June 2007, at http://www.geocities.com/fidelio1st/literature/theamericanscholar.htm

The Town vs. Nature in the Scarlet Letter. Retrieved June 2007, at http://www.studyworld.com/basementpapers/papers/stack34_6.html

Bibliography

Emerson, R.W.: The American Scholar. Retrieved June 2007, at  http://www.bartleby.com/5/101.html 

Emerson, R.W.: Nature. Retrieved June 2007, at http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl302/texts/emerson/nature-emerson-a.html#Chapter%20I

Hawthorne, Nathaniel: The Scarlet Letter. Retrieved June 2007, at  http://www.online-literature.com/hawthorne/ scarletletter

Taylor, Judd: Man Thinking: The Nature of Emerson's American Scholar, March 23, 1999. Retrieved June 2007, at http://www.geocities.com/fidelio1st/literature/theamericanscholar.htm

Setting in Hawthorne's My Kinsman
Words: 1720 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Research Proposal Paper #: 48208302
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The various places he stops represent certain alternative futures, and the brothel promises one of pleasure. His ability to resist it -- whether through morality or lack of money -- and continue on his journey is indicative of the revolutionary spirit. The fact that he keeps moving, and keeps searching in new places, matched the movement of the revolution and indeed of the country since then as it goes through its great democratic experiment.

Hawthorne's story is very enjoyable just as a piece of fiction. It is also an interesting historical piece, describing the feel of life in pre-Revolutionary America and the different opinions at various levels of society. These things are brought out in the setting perhaps more than in any other single element of the story. Time and place are incredibly essential to this story; the story is, in fact, about the changing political setting of the American…

Arrogance in Hawthorne S Male Protagonists
Words: 1413 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 69515378
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Minister's Black Veil" and "The Birth-mark:" Hubris

Many of Nathaniel Hawthorne's works are seen as a critique of Puritan ideology and the dangers of having a judgmental attitude. "The Minister's Black Veil" illustrates the Reverend Hooper's vindictive and narrow-minded attitude not to others but to himself. He punishes himself in perpetuity for some unnamed sin although at the end of his life, right before his death, he proclaims that all human beings wear a black veil of sin, not just himself. "The Birth-mark," in contrast, depicts the dangerous overconfidence of a scientist who is certain that he can render God's creation better than God himself in his attempts to change his wife's appearance. But while Aylmer's actions are more obviously arrogant, both men are essentially acting as judge and jury over others on earth, rather than leaving that judgment to God himself.

At the beginning of "The Birthmark," Aylmer's quest…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Birthmark,"1-10

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Minister's Black Veil." From Twice-Told Tales, 1837, 1851,

Use of Symbolism in Hawthorne's the House of Seven Gables
Words: 1511 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 38698981
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symbolism in literature. Author Nathan Hawthorne used many symbolism opportunities in his works the House of Seven Gables. The writer of this paper explores the symbolism and comments on its effectiveness.

HOUSE OF SEVEN GABLES

Throughout history, the authors of literary works have used symbolism to develop a story or create an understanding. Many of the classics are filled with symbolism, and it is that very symbolism that causes the story to stick in the reader's mind and heart and make the story a classic. In The House of Seven Gables the author, Nathaniel Hawthorne displayed a particularly subtle talent at lacing the story with symbolism for the reader to stumble upon in his journey. Through the use of symbols, we are given the opportunity to view many aspects of the story from a third vantage point, and one that makes it clear for us to understand. The symbolism in…

WORKS CITED

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The House of the Seven Gables. 1851. New York: Bantam, 1981.

Newhall, Beaumont. The Daguerreotype in America. 3rd rev. ed. New York: Dover, 1975.

Noble, Michael Jay Bunker, Hawthorne's 'The House of the Seven Gables.' (Nathaniel Hawthorne's book). Vol. 56, The Explicator, 01-01-1998, pp 72(3).

Davidson, Cathy N. "Photographs of the Dead: Sherman, Daguerre, Hawthorne." South Atlantic Quarterly 89 (1990): 667-701.

Hawthorne Tale Rappaccini's Daughter Hawthorne's
Words: 395 Length: 1 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 69380361
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The beauty of Rappaccini's garden vies with that of the paradisiacal beauty. The greatest difference between the two however is that Rappaccini's scientific quest for knowledge is barren and loveless. Nature, as created by God, is filled with the divine love of its creator and this particular quality cannot be copied by the hand of man. The story is pivoted on the love story between Beatrice, Rappaccini's daughter who is imbued with the poison of the garden, and a young man Giovanni Guasconti. Their infatuation turns into hatred though because of the poisonous curse of the garden. Beatrice however is redeemed when she dies in the end, wishing she had known true love and not just the artificial splendor of the garden: "Though my body be nourished with poison, my spirit is God's creature, and craves love as its daily food."(Hawthorne, 67) Thus, the failed romance between the two lovers…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. Collected Stories. New York: Penguin, 1979.

Comparing Nathaniel Hawthorn's My Kinsman Major Molineux and Young Goodman Brown
Words: 1405 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 40970366
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Hawthorne: My Kinsman, Goodman Brown

The United States experienced great political, social and economic change during the late 1700s and early 1800s. Breaking ties with Great Britain under the Declaration of Independence developed a unique American tradition. The major emphasis was placed on the individual, whose need to succeed would result in the best possible world for everyone concerned. In the two works "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" and "Young Goodman Brown" by Nathaniel Hawthorn, the main characters obin and Young Goodman Brown go on personal journeys to seek their individual goals. obin seeks a kinsman who can help him establish his future livelihood and Brown searches to restore his faith and the evil in his heart. They both each reach a goal, yet not the one expected.

In "My Kinsman," a naive and inexperienced youth named obin leaves his country home and travels to the city looking for his cousin…

References

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" 1832.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown." 1835.

Wakefield and The Ambitious Guest
Words: 1546 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 63752816
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Hawthorne: The Tension Between Individual and Community

The 19th century American author Nathaniel Hawthorne's most famous literary work is The Scarlet Letter, which dramatically illustrates the tensions between the individual's desire for love which is in opposition to the community's social constraints and faith-based ideals. But Hawthorne's short stories like "akefield" and "The Ambitious Guest" also highlight this tension. In these short stories, Hawthorne suggests that all individuals have a desire for independence and to some extent to live outside of social constraints but there is also always a simultaneous desire for community and companionship that cannot be overcome. Of the ambitious guest it is said: "The secret of the young man's character was a high and abstracted ambition. He could have borne to live an undistinguished life, but not to be forgotten in the grave" (Hawthorne 300). Ultimately, both akefield and the ambitious guest strive for individualistic lives marked…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Ambitious Guest." Nathaniel Hawthorne: Tales and Sketches.

The Library of America, 1982: 299-307

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Wakefield," 1-4.

shaming as an alternative'sentencing
Words: 1270 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 65226422
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Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlett Letter explores the method of public shaming as a form of legitimate legal sentencing. In the novel, Hester Prynne has an affair with Reverend Dimmesdale. Even though her husband has practically abandoned her and lives in another country, she is punished for what was in Puritan America considered a crime. The punishment reflects Puritanical values related to female sexuality, and reveals ways a patriarchal society controls women's choices by monitoring and controlling their private lives. Given private and domestic spheres were the only realms women had any degree of power, the control over women's sexuality in The Scarlett Letter shows how patriarchy becomes entrenched and immutable. Moreover, the use of public shaming to sentence Prynne serves an overarching function of social control. Religion, a core theme in The Scarlett Letter, is the vehicle of that social control and the law is also used to enforce and…

Tampering With Nature Explored in
Words: 2007 Length: 6 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 19325880
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This is an interesting point-of-view about Aylmer and it works with his character. Others identify Georgiana's birthmark as something that is essentially hers and therefore, should remain with her. Shakinovsky goes even further to say that it is a "metaphor for her identity, her sexuality, her being" (Shakinovsky). Aylmer is blind to this fact altogether. He cannot see that "in removing the mark, he removes all there is of her" (Shakinovsky). He could not accept the fact that he could not just remove a portion of her -- it was all or nothing.

Shakinovsky reinforces the point that all of the characters in "The Birthmark" realize that Georgiana cannot be separated from her birthmark, except Aylmer. However, as the story progresses, the birthmark becomes "Aylmer's object, and since, as the sign of her subjectivity, it represents Georgiana, it becomes she who is his object" (Shakinovsky). Again, we see how Aylmer's…

Works Cited

Eckstein, Barbara. "Hawthorne's 'The Birthmark: Science and Romance as Belief.'" Studies in Short Fiction. 1989. 26.4. EBSCO Resource Database. Site Accessed November 17, 2004. http://www.searchepnet.com

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Birthmark." The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. Cassil, R.V., ed. 1981 W.W. Norton and Company. pp. 600-13.

Henry James. "Nathaniel Hawthorne." Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism. 1879. GALE Resource Database. Site Accessed November 18, 2004.  http://www.infotrac.galegroup.com 

Rosenberg, Liz. "The best that earth could offer: 'The Birth-mark," a newlywed's story.'" Studies in Short Fiction. 1993. EBSCO Resource Database. Site Accessed November 17, 2004. http://www.searchepnet.com

Compare and Contrast Themes of Young Goodman Brown and the Lottery
Words: 979 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 88175954
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Goodman Brown/Lottery

Literature is frequently employed as a device for social and political commentary. This is certainly true in Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown," and Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery." Both these stories darkly satirize the rigid social conventions that define small town American life. Even though they wrote about a century apart, Hawthorne and Jackson drew similar conclusions about American religious life and culture. Throughout his career, Nathaniel Hawthorne remained concerned about the hypocritical nature of puritanism. Stories like "Young Goodman Brown" darkly satirize religious fundamentalism and mob mentality. "Young Goodman Brown" is about a man who believes he might have dreamed of a strange pagan ritual set deep in the woods. Even his wife, ironically named Faith, attends the ritual. Faith's presumed faith in Christianity is proven false by her attending a Satanic rite in the woods. atching the ritual shocks Goodman Brown literally to death. In "The Lottery,"…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown." Retrieved online:  http://www.online-literature.com/poe/158/ 

Jackson, Shirley. "The Lottery." Retrieved online:  http://www.americanliterature.com/Jackson/SS/TheLottery.html

Symbolism in the Minister's Black
Words: 1995 Length: 6 Pages Document Type: Research Proposal Paper #: 78131924
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Hooper's wearing of the veil only reinforces this notion. e are all unclean and should be aware of our condition. Hooper believed this and says so on his deathbed when he tells those around him, "On every visage a Black Veil!" (Hawthorne 640) G.A. Santangelo believes that Hawthorne was concerned with a delusional state of innocence in that no one can be innocent in this world "because man has a propensity for evil that musty be understood" (Santangelo 61). No one of this earth can be innocent and failure to recognize this "leads to a childish egotism and an unrealistic ethic which results in a sterile paganism" (61). Hooper makes a choice that isolates him but it is a choice that is "dedicated to a higher purpose" (66). In this sense, he "accepts the darkness, not in pride, but of necessity" (66). This story is tragic, according to Santangelo because…

Works Cited

Gilbert P. Voigt. "The Meaning of 'The Minister's Black Veil.' College English. 1952. JSTOR

Resource Database. Information Retrieved March 19, 2009.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Minister's Black Veil." Concise Anthology of English Literature. McMichael, George. Ed. New Jersey: Upper Saddle River. 2006.

Morsberger, Robert. "The Minister's Black Veil': Shrouded in a Blackness, Ten Times Black."

Interpretation Analysis Evaluation of a Short Story
Words: 1253 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 58607530
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irthmark, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, is the story of a man consumed by the pursuit of perfection. He seeks absolute knowledge and absolute control, and imagines that he has discovered great scientific absolutes including the nature of the very heavens and the reason volcanoes erupt. After he marries, he becomes obsessed by a small birthmark on the cheek of his otherwise flawlessly beautiful young wife. His obsession with perfection combined with his scientific hubris leads to the death of his wife. Ironically, in death, the hated birthmark finally fades. The story demonstrates the danger of hubris in assuming that science will have all our answers, that we can manipulate life to meet our arbitrary standards.

Hawthorne demonstrates the protagonist, Aylmer's, obsession through various references. In the opening paragraph he says Aylmer.".. had made experience of a spiritual affinity more attractive than any chemical one. He had left his laboratory to the…

Bibliography

1) Beauchamp, Gorman. 2002. "Hawthorne and the Universal Reformers." Utopian Studies 13. (Beauchamp, 2002)

2) Fitzpatrick, Martin. 2000. "To a Practised Touch': Miles Coverdale and Hawthorne's Irony." ATQ 14:1, pp. 27+. (Fitzpatrick, 2000)

3) Wohlpart, A. James. 1994. "Allegories of art, allegories of heart: Hawthorne's 'Egotism' and 'The Christmas Banquet.'" Studies in Short Fiction, June 22. (Wohlpart, 1994)

ALSO:

Secret Scarlet Secrets as the
Words: 2077 Length: 7 Pages Document Type: Thesis Paper #: 93921803
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hen Hester is first alone with Chillingworth, for instance, and in several preceding descriptions, she appears to be undergoing a process of destruction herself. She is immensely ashamed, and very aware of the eyes that dart furtively towards the letter emblazoned on her chest; she is too weak to think straight when Chillingworth administers a medicine to Pearl that could, for all Hester knows, be poison, and she is far too weak to resist Chillingworth's insistence that she keep his secrets.

Hester is the first of the three major characters, however, to make a transition to a stronger and more secure position with herself and with her sin; she has clearly found an inner redemption long before the others. The reason for this is the same as the reason that she is the first, and for the bulk of the book the only, character to acknowledge her sin -- Pearl.…

Work Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. New York: Dover, 1994.

Compare and Contrast Pieces of Literature
Words: 607 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 254850
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Hawthorne and Poe, both authors depict women who struggle and suffer at the hands of masculine stereotypes. In Hawthorne's "Rapaccini's Daughter" and The Scarlet Letter, and Poe's "Ligeia" the depiction of women characters illustrates each authors sensitivity to the plight of women in the 19th Century.

Considering that Nathaniel Hawthorne lived and wrote in the radical cultural milieu of Concord, Massachusetts, alongside such women's rights luminaries like Emerson, the Alcott sisters, and of course, Margaret Fuller, it is not surprising to find in his literary works a treatment of women that demonstrates, above all, an immense sensitivity to the plight of women struggling for freedom in a man's world. Yet In both "Rappaccini's Daughter" and The Scarlet Letter, published before and after the Seneca Falls Convention of 1848, Hawthorne's women characters suffer because of masculine notions of feminine beauty and character.

In Rappaccini's Daughter" Hawthorne tells a stark tale of…

Truth and Consequences in Chopin's
Words: 933 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 95450882
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The pink ribbon fluttering before him is significant because it represents Faith, his wife and faith, his religion - both of which are "gone" (Hawthorne) at this point. He is changed by what he believes is truth and he can trust no one anymore. It is difficult enough that the man looses his faith but he also comes to look upon his faith with disdain. His appreciation for all that once held dear is ruined by what he might or might not have seen in the forest. The Sabbath, once a holy day, is infected to the point that Goodman cannot listen to hymns because an "anthem of sin rushed loudly upon his ear and drowned all the blessed strain" (Hawthorne). Everything and everyone is dirty and, unfortunately, there is no relief for Goodman.

It is important to note that while Goodman never knows the absolute truth about what his…

Works Cited

Chopin, Kate. "The Story of an Hour." Virginia Commonwealth University. Information Retrieved November 9, 2008.  http://www.vcu.edu/engweb/webtexts/hour/ 

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Literature Network Online. "Young Goodman Brown." Information Retrieved November 9, 2008.  http://www.online-literature.com/hawthorne/ 158

Plot The Most Important Element
Words: 761 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 48615606
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1272).

The plot itself consists of a symbolic journey unto the Puritan heart of darkness, a place of communion with the devil himself, which, as it turns out, is only a dream. Nevertheless, the dream material clearly traumatizes Young Goodman Brown as much as if the evil trip into the forest, where in the dream, he even meets his wife Faith (" My Faith is gone!'" (p. 1269), he cries in despair, into the darkness, seizing one of his wife's symbolic pink ribbons from the branch of a tree) had happened to him in real life.

ithin his frightening dream, Young Goodman Brown, reluctant yet somehow determined, sets out, near sunset, on a journey into the forest, from which his new young wife with pretty pink ribbons in her hair, "My love and my Faith'" (p. 1264) tries in vain to keep him back. This is not just for purposes…

Work Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown." The Norton Anthology of American Literature 1820-1865. Volume B. (Pkg. 1). Nina Baym et al. (Eds).

New York: Norton, 2003. 1263-1272.

Evil Influences
Words: 1491 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 7134947
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Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, "Moby-Dick" by Herman Melville, and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain. Specifically, it compares and contraststhese three characters in relation to the evil that dominates them, indicate what the attitude of the author is regarding each one, discuss the source of their evil nature or acts, the nature of the evil deeds they commit, and the results of these evil designs.

It will also select the character that should be the most strongly condemned and fully justify why. Each of these novel's characters is dominated by the evil influence of another character, and each of them faces this domination in a different way. Each character grows stronger from this evil influence, and learns how to remove the evil influence from their lives.

Evil is present in all of these novels, and much of each novel's theme revolves around the age-old premise of good…

References

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Scarlet Letter." Bartleby.com. 2004. 6 April 2004.  http://www.bartleby.com/83/index.html 

Melville, Herman. Moby-Dick Or, the Whale. New York: Hendricks House, 1952.

Twain, Mark. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. New York P.F. Collier & Son Company, 1912.

Human Savagery in Young Goodman
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Come devil! For thee is this world given..." This passage reflected Goodman's surrender to the wilderness, to the state of disorder that made him discover that he is weak and sinful. The presence of Faith in the first part of the story was also the only time that Goodman felt his strong faith in God. However, upon entering the wilderness, Faith his wife had not only disappeared, but Goodman's faith in God (and even himself) as well. Hawthorne made readers realize that human nature is in fact "naturally savage," and it is only fitting that Goodman's inherently savage nature would be discovered and uncovered (by him) in the wilderness.

Even towards the end of the story, Hawthorne continued to haunt his readers with the theme of wilderness inherent in the hearts and minds of humanity. Posing the question, "Had Goodman rown fell asleep in the forest, and only dreamed a…

Bibliography

Fitzgerald, S.F. E-text of "The Great Gatsby." Project Gutenberg of Australia Web site. Available at  http://www.gutenberg.net.au/0200041.txt .

Hawthorne, N. E-text of "Young Goodman Brown." Available at http://unx1.shsu.edu/~eng_wpf/authors/Hawthorne/Goodman-Brown.htm.

Allegorical Components in Rip Van
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He might have received his wish but that wish cost him 20 years.

In "Young Goodman Brown," Hawthorne allows us to look at the frail nature of man through Brown's curious nature. He wants to know what is happening in the woods and does not stop to think of the unintended consequences. He does not know what to think when he stumbles upon the scene in the forest. The sight of respectable citizens partaking in a satanic ritual makes Brown feel "overburdened with the heavy sickness of his heart" (Hawthorne 594). He looses faith in man and, subsequently, faith in God, wondering if there was a "heaven above him" (594). He vows to "stand firm against the devil" (294) despite everything but the knowledge of his wife in the forest proves to be more than he can bear. Hawthorne utilizes the aspect of change to demonstrate the fragile human psyche.…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown." The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. Ed.

R.V. Cassill. New York W.W. Norton and Company. 1981. pp. 589-99.

Irving, Washington. "Rip Van Winkle." The Complete Tales of Washington Irving. Ed.

Charles Neider. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1999. pp. 1-16.

American Lit Definition of Modernism and Three
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American Lit

Definition of Modernism and Three Examples

Indeed, creating a true and solid definition of modernism is exceptionally difficult, and even most of the more scholarly critical accounts of the so-called modernist movement tend to divide the category into more or less two different movements, being what is known as "high modernism," which reflected the erudition and scholarly experimentalism of Eliot, Joyce, and Pound, and the so-called "low modernism" of later American practitioners, such as William Carlos Williams. Nonetheless, despite the problems of reification involved with such a task, I will attempt to invoke a definitions of at least some traits of modernism, as culled from the Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics:

First, [in modernism] "realization" had to replace description, so that instead of copying the external world the work could render it in an image insisting on its own forms of reality... [and] Second, the poets develop…

Bibliography

Preminger, Alex and Brogan T.V.F. The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics.

Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP, 1993.

Symbolism Explored in the Story
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This makes him question "heaven above him" (Hawthorne 594). hile he does decide to take a stand against what he sees in the forest, it is too late because what he has seen has already changed him. Faith's pink ribbon flickering is important because it represents his wife and his faith, which he has seemingly lost in one night. e read that that are simply "gone" (595). Goodman is radically transformed by what he believes took place in the forest and while it was something he thought he could handle and something he thought he wanted to know, he was deadly wrong but there was not way for him to go back and reverse events. Like Louise, he is changed but not in a good way.

Symbolism is significant to each story as well. In "The Story of an Hour," the house and the window are important to Louise's development…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "Young Goodman Brown." The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. New York W.W. Norton and Company. 1981.

Chopin, Kate. "The Story of an Hour." The Heath Anthology of American Literature. Lauter, Paul, ed. Lexington D.C. Heath and Company. 1990.

Fiction Setting Is One of
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In Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado," the setting is of a very different nature, but also concerns life, death, and the irony that often accompanies the interaction between the two. The main character and first-person narrator, Montresor, leads Fortunato to his grave for an unnamed trespass. Under the pretence of wanting his expertise regarding a cask of amontillado, Montresor leads his friend into the recesses of an extensive vault, which also serves as a grave for a centuries-old family. The story is filled with increasingly grim descriptions of damp darkness and "piled bones" belonging to the generations of Montresor's family. The increasing darkness then correlates with the theme of Fortunato's impending doom. At the final turn, Montresor traps him in a crypt and seals him inside. The darkness can then serve to indicate the darkness of Montresor's action as well as the horror of Fortunato's final doom.

In Hawthorne's story,…

Compare and Contrast the Concept
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nature in American literature, from earliest writings to the Civil War period. It is my purpose to outline the connection between spirituality, freedom and nature and explain how American writers have chosen to reflect and interpret these themes in relation to their historical realities.

At the beginning of the colonization process there were two congruent depictions of nature. Initially, the tribes comprising The Iroquois League lived in close contact with nature and believed in the importance of maintaining a harmonious relationship with it. In this respect, the Iroquois Constitution imposes a devout display of gratitude to all by-human elements of the world before the opening of any council. On the other hand, the early explorers and founders of the United States perceived an immense natural potential in the country. In this sense, Thomas Hariot describes the New World as a land of wealth, his words and images aimed both at…

References

Barna, Mark. (2001, May) Our Romance with Nature. The World and I, Vol.16, No.5

Webb, J. Echoes of Paine: Tracing the Age of Reason through the Writings of Emerson (2006). ATQ (The American Transcendental Quarterly), Vol. 20, No.3

Whicher, G.F. (1945) Walden Revisited: A Centennial Tribute to Henry David Thoreau. Chicago: Packard

Collective Perception Art Is One Facet of
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collective perception, art is one facet of life that is governed more by individual thought and emotional predisposition than by institutional prejudices. It should seem a natural disposition of the artist to look within himself for expression, rather than to the very established conventions from which he may seek to provide asylum. Likewise, it strikes a chord of logic to us that an artist makes his primary appeal to his own imagination, rather than to millennia of intellectual rules. This, however, is a new perspective as compared to the age of humanity. From Enlightenment through the mid eighteenth century, classical rules intended to preserve the integrity and exclusivity of artistic expression were the prime determinant in the nature of societal artistic output. However, a surge in the population of the bourgeoisie, an overall expansion in the international middle class, opened up the possibility for artistry without the condition of aristocracy.…

Bibliography

1. Buell, Lawrence. New England literary culture from revolution through renaissance. 1986. PS243.B84 1986.

2. Gravil, Richard. Romantic dialogues: Anglo-American continuities, 1776-1862. 2000. PS159.E5 G73 2000.

3. Hertz, Robert. "English and American Romanticism." Personalist 46 (1965), 81-92. AP2.P46.

Scarlett Letter
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Scarlett Letter

Review of the Scarlet Letter

The Scarlet Letter was written by Nathaniel Hawthorne in 1850. Hawthorne has been canonized in many literary circles and is widely recognized as one of the most famous writers of American literature. He wrote The Scarlet Letter at the age of 46, at a time in which he lived with his wife in Concord, Massachusetts. Hawthorne belonged to the Transcendentalist school of writers, which included notable New England writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau; this group of writers were less indebted to religion than was common at the time, and preferred to look toward nature and individual thought as sources of wisdom. By the time that The Scarlet Letter was written, Hawthorne was already a well-established writer. He had published his first novel in 1828, a full 22 years before The Scarlet Letter. In this regard, The Scarlet Letter…

Instructor Teaching the Course You
Words: 315 Length: 1 Pages Document Type: Reaction Paper Paper #: 3819862
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Also, it does not really fit very well with the rest of the syllabus. The other stories on the syllabus have three-dimensional characters that show a mix of good and bad characteristics, and face moral dilemmas. But the 'good man' of the title is suddenly confronted with a vision of hypocrisy, of the good people of the town showing their evil side. He does not come to this encounter with any soul-searching, or because he has done something particularly extraordinary, in terms of the story's plot. The story is heavy-handed and does not make much of a 'case' for the effective use of symbolism or the use of stories with clearly moral tales. Most people in the class have already encountered fables and morality tales in their other reading, even as children, and the more complex modernist works are a better spur towards better writing and…

Margaret Fuller Was Born in Boston and
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Margaret Fuller was born in Boston and pushed hard at a young age by a father who, when she was just four years old, recognized her high level of intelligence and sought to instill in her a thirst for knowledge. Her father, Timothy Fuller, a Unitarian rationalist, treated her "…not as a plaything, but as a living mind," she explained (Gornick, 2012, p. 2). hile it is true she later wrote at length about how much she appreciated being induced by her intellectual father to study literature, philosophy and to learn languages even before her teens, she reportedly suffered "lifelong migraines, permanent insomnia and impaired eyesight" as a result of the intensity of the pedagogic pressure from her father (Gornick, p. 2). She also had a constant worry that "her intellectual output was insufficient," Gornick writes in The Nation; this was ironic because she was such an intellectual powerhouse and…

Works Cited

Fuller, Margaret. Woman in the 19th Century. North Chelmsford, MA: Courier Dover

Publications. 1999.

Gale Biography in Context. "(Sarah) Margaret Fuller / Feminist Writers." Retrieved November

29, 2012, from http://0-ic.galegroup.com. 1996,

American Romanticism the Period Known
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In Irving's case, he expanded on his background of writing historical works, with his satirical approach individual and distinctive. This developed the genre partly by introducing satire as an effective element. At the same time, it also showed that literature could be expanded to suit any style.

Edgar Allan Poe is the third writer who contributed significantly to the development of American Romanticism. Poe added an element of horror and wrote short stories that were both disturbing and haunting. One of the interesting things about Poe is that the effectiveness of his stories did not rely only on the storyline. For example, the short story "The Fall of the House of Usher" is the narrator's account of his visit to a haunted house and his encounters with the strange brother and sister that live there. In this case, it is not the actual storyline that makes the story effective. Instead,…

Rappaccini's Daughter
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RAPPACCINI'S DAUGHTER -- SCIENCE

"RAPPACCINI'S DAUGHTER"

In Nathaniel Hawthorne's 1844 fantasy tale "Rappaccini's Daughter," Dr. Giacomo Rappaccini is clearly obsessed with science, for Hawthorne states that he cares "infinitely more for science than for mankind" and would "sacrifice human life. . . For the sake of adding so much as a grain of mustard seed to the great heap of his accumulated knowledge." Dr. Rappaccini's obsession for the power that science brings to him has also affected his daughter eatrice whose body has been slowly poisoned from her birth. As a result, she is immune to these poisons but her touch is deadly to everyone she comes in contact with, such as Giovanni Guasconti, a young student that falls madly in love with eatrice even after discovering that her touch and breath is fatal. The lives and fates of Dr. Rappaccini, eatrice and Giovanni are therefore intricately linked to science…

BIBLIOGRAPHY

"Rappaccini's Daughter -- Nathaniel Hawthorne." Internet. Accessed February 11, 2005.

 http://www.shsu.edu/~eng_wpf/authors/Hawthorne/Rappaccini.htm .

Dark and Light Symbolism in
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There is no question that the letter has darkened her future. hen Hester and Dimmesdale are in the forest with Pearl, with see that light is associated with love and hope. e are told, "No golden light had ever been so precious as the gloom of this dark forest . . .Here seen only by her eyes, Arthur Dimmesdale, false to God and man, might be, for one moment true" (188). Goodness and light are associated with Pearl. e read that she is "very brightest little jet of flame that ever danced upon the earth" (95). In contrast, Chillingworth is associated with darkness. One of the most compelling scenes that demonstrates this is at the conclusion of the novel when we are told about the change that had taken place. Chillingworth looses his strength and energy and shriveled away, "like an uprooted weed that lies wilting in the sun" (251).…

Work Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. New Jersey: Watermill Classics. 1995.

Dimmesdale as the Greatest Sinner
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e cannot look to our circumstances for reasons to do anything wrong. Dimmesdale is no different from the young boy that grows up in an abusive household beating his wife and claiming that he is not responsible because of his environment.

Finally, Dimmesdale's suicide is the ultimate gesture of his weakness. He cannot be honest with those that assume to know him. He claims in these last moments that he withheld his "own heavy sin and miserable agony" (244) and now must let the truth be known. This is a brave move and it would have been even braver to live after confessing. Instead, he takes his own life. Many may assume that he took his own life because of grief and inner turmoil but it makes more sense to assume that he could not live with what he had done and he could not have lived with the kind…

Works Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. New Jersey: Watermill Classics. 1995.

Character Dilemma Topic the Scarlet
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The actual sins are thus not Hester's adultery, but the minister's cowardice and her former husband's plans of revenge. Society as a whole could not help, but act according to the laws one thought fit to protect it from destruction. The community was blind, but not nearly as guilty of sin as the two men in Hester's life. The narrator reminds the reader of the two most important things a new colony was first raising on its new founded ground: a prison and a cemetery. Death and punishment were the two tools that gave people a certainty and the power to believe in their future as a community. That is why, although they are guilty of hypocrisy and prejudice, they are having the excuse of being blinded by their struggle to keep their community alive at all costs.

Hester is the element that seemed to threaten the very existence of…

literature and religion annotated bibliography
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Religion features prominently as a theme in literature. In fact, some of the earliest works of literature are rooted in their religious and cultural traditions, including the ancient literatures of the Middle East and Mesopotamia.

As the role of religion in society changed, so too did the role of religion in literature.

Modern literature, including work by Nathaniel Hawthorne, often offers scathing critiques of religion, whereas postmodern literature allows religion to play a more complex role in shaping individual identity.

Nathaniel Hawthorne's he Scarlett Letter heavily criticizes the role of religion in a patriarchal society, whereas Yann Martel's Life of Pi presents religion more as a subjective phenomenon, revealing an important cultural shift from religion to spirituality.

In Nathaniel Hawthorne's he Scarlett Letter, the author shows how religion becomes a tool of social oppression and political control.

A. Hawthorne shows that religious authorities are hypocritical, and especially fundamentalists, as the…

This article offers some interesting background information on Yann Martel as an author, showing that the author's secular background proves that Life of Pi is making a clear statement about the difference between religion and spirituality. Religion is an outmoded social institution, whereas spirituality remains central to the human experience. The character of Pi illustrates the similarities between faith in God and faith in one's own ability to succeed, and through the motif of the journey also shows that "a journey toward enlightenment" can be stripped of any religious or even cultural context (Stephens 41).

Stratton, Florence. "Hollow at the core": Deconstructing Yann Martel's Life of Pi" SCI/ELC, Vol, 29, No. 2, 2004. Retrieved online:  https://journals.lib.unb.ca/index.php/SCL/article/view/12746/13690 

This article critiques Yann Martel's novel by showing that the protagonist fails to actually show any growth, while also noting that the author takes a firm postmodern stance on the nature of truth or reality. The author points out that Life of Pi in part addresses the question of objective reality and whether a human being can even determine whether there is any objective reality, a core feature of postmodernism in general. This article offers a refreshing counterpoint to the other articles about Life of Pi.

Cautionary Tales Revealed in The
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He does not care because he is greedy. Victor is the same way. He wants the knowledge of how nature works. He is curious and this eventually gets the best of him. He says, "I would sacrifice my fortune, my existence, my every hope, to the furtherance of my enterprise. One man's life or death was but a small price to pay for the acquirement of the knowledge which I sought" (Shelley 13). Victor realizes the folly of his ways but it is too late to salvage anything that he has lost. Dorothy and Thomas Hoobler agrees with this assumption, noting that the irony of the story is that, "at the culmination of his research, the moment of his triumph, all Victor's pleasure in life ends" (Hoobler 159). Both men are consumed and actually believe that they possess some of the characteristics of God.

Both men suffer from their selfish…

Work Cited

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "The Birthmark." The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. Cassil, R.V.,

ed. 1981 W.W. Norton and Company. pp. 600-13.

Hoobler, Dorothy and Thomas. The Monsters: Mary Shelley and the Curse of Frankenstein. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2006.

Erich S. Rupprecht. "Nathaniel Hawthorne." Supernatural Fiction Writers. 1985. Scribner's

Descriptive Essay Examples to Get You Started
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Melvilles Spouter Inn
Some of the best descriptive essayexamples can be found among the writings of the greatest authors. Consider a chapter in Moby-Dick by Herman Melville: every chapter of that book is like a mini-descriptive essay. Look at the way Melville uses description to create atmospheric effect in the first line of Chapter 3: The Spouter Inn from Moby-Dick: Entering that gable-ended Spouter-Inn, you found yourself in a wide, low, straggling entry with old-fashioned wainscots, reminding one of the bulwarks of some condemned old craft. Melville uses words like condemned to convey a sense of foreboding and doom, and the adjectives wide, low, straggling produce a claustrophobic effect on the readerone that pulls him in with force. Melville also uses consonance, assonance and alliteration to make the words flow more enjoyably and give the description a kind of musical quality. Go to any chapter in Moby-Dick and you will…

Humor in Literature American Literature Is Unique
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Humor in Literature

American literature is unique in that the attitudes of the works tend to reflect the spirit of the nation and of her citizens. One of the trademarks of American literature is that authors display a tone that can be very serious, but that also can be interpreted as humorous. hereas texts from other cultures are usually more concerned with message and in presenting that message in a dry, even stoic manner, American literature is uniquely capable of mixing the honest and the humorous. Even in the most serious and earnest stories, the sensibility of American humor can be detected. Of course, there are different types of humor. Some stories are flat-out ridiculous and make the reader laugh. Other stories are more sarcastic in their approach to humor and the funny moments have to be analyzed to be better understood. Still other tales are anecdotal and function as…

Works Cited:

Hawthorne, Nathaniel (1986). The Scarlet Letter. Bantam: New York, NY.

Irving, Washington (1917). "Rip Van Winkle." Rip Van Winkle and the Legend of Sleepy

Hollow. Harvard.

Poe, Edgar Allen (1844). http://www.amlit.com/twentyss/chap18.html

Chillingworth and Claggart the Symbols of Evil
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Chillingworth from the Scarlet Letter with Claggart from Billy Budd

erman Mellville admired Nathaniel awthorne and presented him as the lucky strike of faith for the American literary world. According to Melville, the genius of Shakespeare had found a worthy follower in awthorne. The "villains" in Melville's "Billy Bud" and awthorne's "The Scarlet Letter" are characters that challenge the reader into questioning the deeply ingrained and often pain relieving belief that originally there is something good in every human being. They both embody pure evil in human form, with or without an obvious motivation.

In his "Introduction" to the book "Billy Bud," Cyrus R. K. Patell is placing an emphasis on the importance of the influence Nathaniel awthorne's writings had on erman Melville's literary style and more importantly, on his entire artistic vision. Not surprisingly, the two authors created characters that will forever stand as works of art produced in…

Hawthorne, N. The Scarlet Letter. Simon and Schuster,

2004

Patell, C.R.K. Introduction to Billy Bud, Sailor, 2015.

Afternoon I Have Gone Through
Words: 2030 Length: 7 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 32601463
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Rather than being a negative thing, Black views the subjectivity of Constitutional interpretation to reflect the very freedoms we as Americans say it embodies in ink. Although when Black penned his book, blacks and women had attained all the rights formerly available only to white men, a different interpretation of "freedom" still depended upon one's color or gender.

"Sure there is a document called the Constitution. That's no myth. It's in Washington, under glass, if you want to visit it. But the Constitution that binds us is the one we have in our heads. That mythic Constitution performs functions no 200-year-old parchment ever could." (Black, "Our Constitution: The Myth that Binds Us")

As he does in an earlier chapter, Black lauds the way that the Constitution of the United States is so open to interpretation by modern generations. He does not disparage the original work that made the basis of…