Thesis: Encountering the World

Sample Thesis Paper

Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Young Goodman Brown was written by Nathaniel Hawthorne and presents a story of a man who is pulled between the choices of good and evil. The story starts out without giving the reader the motive because of which the protagonist, Goodman Brown, sets out from his house to join the Devil (Hawthorne, 2006). However, it is apparent that Brown is there is there without his own free will. He accompanies the Devil in a walk into the depths of a forest and continues to accompany him in what he at first considers his lone journey with no companion other than the devil beside him.
However, his formerly suppressed desire to resist continuing the journey becomes weaker when he sees that the people who brought up his faith and nurtured his trust in all that is good are also joining the Devil in the walk. As the walk into the depths of the forest continues, more people join the Devil and we see that Goodman recognizes most of them as his townsfolk (Hawthorne, 2006). He sees people who he considered to be of immaculate moral character and those to whom he looked for inspiration and motivation to good. The thought that they too are now engaged with the Devil repulses him and in what appears to be an act of vengeance, his resolve to accompany the Devil on the journey grows stronger. However, we see that Goodman is influenced by the one entity that he missed when he set out on his journey; his wife. When he sees his wife join the procession, he finds that the matter has become more personal to him than it formerly was.

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