Born in Salem, Massachusetts in 1804, Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote novels The Scarlet Letter, The House of Seven Gables, and the short story “Young Goodman Brown,” among others. Descendants from Judge Hathorne of the Salem Witch Trails, Nathaniel Hawthrone changed the spelling of his name early in life in order to disassociate himself from his family’s ancestral past, and often examined the themes of guilt and sin and religious hypocrisy.
Spanning the ‘expansionist’ period and often being paired with Poe as a ‘Dark Romantic’, Hawthorne’s work helps us transition from Expansionism to Romanticism in our study of literary time periods and movements in America.
For more information about Nathaniel Hawthorne, please view the video below:
Hawthorne’s short story, “Young Goodman Brown” is an allegorical tale that examines Hawthorne’s two popular themes. Following Young Goodman Brown into the woods at night, Hawthorne examines our assumptions about our neighbors, our ourselves and our faith as Americans.
Please see the images and documents below to review our notes from class today, and to read the story.