Comparing Misfit And Young Goodman Brown

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The two antagonists in these short stories formed a major part in the development of the other characters. In fact, one can argue that the antagonists were more developed characteristically than the main characters. In A Goodman Is Hard To Find the antagonist is Misfit, an old man who had named himself as such because of a past punishment that did not fit the crime. Misfit, compared to the other characters in the same story shows a greater amount of self-awareness as he questions the meaning of life, and his existence in it. His moral code may be skewed, but it is strong and consistent which give him his strength in conviction that his grandmother lacks. In the story Young Goodman Brown, the antagonist also appears as an old man, which later…show more content…
Both the Old man in Young Goodman Brown, and Misfit in A Goodman Is Hard To Find gave an example of evil coming from the least of expected places in their own way. The old man as he appeared to young Goodman Brown in the forest told him that he was well acquainted with his family, “…as with ever a one among Puritains”(1035). The old man went on to say that he had helped his, “…grandfather, the constable, when he lashed the Quaker woman so smartly through the streets of Salem; it was [he] that brought his father a pitch-pine knot to set fire to an Indian village”(1035). The old man went on to say that he was a good friend with both his grandfather, and the Indians at the time when he betrayed the Indians, but that he would be a friend of young Goodman Brown for both his grandfather, and the Indian’s sake. This is the start of the old man beginning to make Goodman Brown believe that those he knew were not the kind of people that he thought they were. As far as Brown knew, he came form a religiously righteous family who did no harm, but the old man had just told him that he was there when his puritan grandfather was lashing a Quaker woman. This is an important statement because at that time Quakers were known for their religious tolerance, and pacifism, meanwhile Puritans were the religious group doing most of the religious prosecutions. The old man tries to skew this moral…show more content…
In an attempt to explain his strong moral convictions he says that, “Jesus was the only one that ever raised the dead, and [that] he shouldn't have done it. He shown everything off balance. If he did what he said, then its nothing for you to do but throw away everything and follow Him, and if He didn’t, then its nothing for you to do but enjoy the few minutes you got left the best way you can by killing somebody or burning down his house or doing some other meanness to him. No pleasure but meanness.” At that instant the grandmother scared for her life showed just how weak her convictions were when she said, “Maybe [Jesus] He didn't raise the dead.” This wasn’t an attempt on Misfit’s part to try to purposely shake his mother’s religion, but it just so happened that he shook up what she believed in by simply displaying his strong convictions. Misfit is different from the old man speaking to Goodman Brown because the old man intentionally tries to persuade Brown into believing something that isn’t. The old man now as a dark evil figure proclaims in front of young Goodman Brown that, “There are all whom ye have reverenced from youth. Ye deemed them holier than yourselves, and shrank from your own sin, contrasting it with their lives of righteousness and prayerful aspirations heavenward. Yet here are they all in my

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