Meaning Of Young Goodman Brown

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Every day of one’s life, we are presented with choices. These choices vary from simple, such as taking a different route home from work; to difficult, such as picking which law school we want to attend. No matter what choices we are presented with, no one will remember those. All anyone will ever remember are the decisions we made in life from our presented choices. Take Young Goodman Brown, for example; a man whose every decision in life has been the right one. This is a man who, not only is a good christian, but comes from a line of godly men who have been pedestals in the community of Salem, Massachusetts. He has a wife, named Faith, who is deeply in love with him, and has a very bright future ahead of him; all of which seem crumble within …show more content…
The first symbol he gives us is the pink ribbon that we take notice of when we are first introduced to Goodman Brown’s wife. “And Faith, as the wife was aptly named, thrust her own pretty head into the street, letting the wind play with the pink ribbons of her cap,”(Hawthorne 167-168). Pink ribbons are normally associated with breast cancer awareness. However, in this story, the pink ribbon represents innocence. The pink ribbon is visited again in the story of Young Goodman Brown when he discovers it in the forest hanging from a branch. The discovery of the ribbon refers to the loss of Young Goodman Brown’s faith in his religious beliefs; this is due to the devilish experiences he’s had through his journey in the forest. Furthermore, Faith’s name itself is a symbol. Young Goodman Brown, as we know, is a Godly man. He is solely devoted to his beliefs and his faith, just as he’s devoted to his wife Faith. Another symbol we interpret is the sunset. As stated before, our story begins with a sunset over the Salem Village. Sunsets can be strong symbolism for the ending of something. In this case, the sun sets as Young Goodman Brown is leaving his house to embark on his journey. The sunset represents the ending of Young Goodman Brown’s beliefs and faith as he makes the decision to attend this meeting in the forest. …show more content…
Throughout the story, he straddles the fence between wanting to be a God fearing man, but also wanting to know what exactly occurs within the heart of the forest. His innocent nature allows the unexplainable mysterious nature of the forest to draw him into nothing but trouble. Everything that Young Goodman Brown believed he knew about his religion, the people in his community, and himself were all ripped apart when he stepped foot into the forest. Though he had many chances to turn around, the decision was already made in his subconscious that he was going to see this night through. And he did. This break in his reality awakens him to the evil nature of those around him. This makes him lose his faith, both literally and figuratively. Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes…and the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility”(1945). Regardless of his intentions for that night, Young Goodman Brown was met with the repercussions of his decision. Furthermore, he cannot hold anyone else responsible for said repercussions except for himself. Young Goodman Brown could have chosen to spend the night with his wife; or he could have chosen to turn around on his path. However, a decision was made, and it is one that he was no choice but to live with until the day of his

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