How Does Nathaniel Hawthorne Use Symbols In Young Goodman Brown

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In Nathaniel Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" the use of symbols allows the story's advancement into the theme of uncovering the truth about humanity. Symbolism is used as a means to help the reader bring the battle between good and evil to light. Hawthorne, therefore, uses symbols like the pink ribbons and Faith, the serpentine staff, and the black mass of clouds to support his points that humanity is prone to fall into darkness. Hawthorne uses pink ribbons to symbolize Faith, the innocence of truth, and all the good that can follow. It further represents the pure heart and honesty that surrounds Goodman Brown. Faith tries to keep Young Goodman Brown from entering any temptations of sin and pleads with him to follow the right path. Ultimately, she represents the good within the bad and the struggle good experiences to stay pure. Faith’s religious beliefs play a role throughout the story guiding and questioning all Young Goodman Browns decisions. In regards to the theme of uncovering truths about humanity, the pink ribbons and Faith are prime examples of the purest, most…show more content…
Interestingly enough, the traveler uses a staff which is often used by nomads to keep their balance during long journeys. Balance, in this sense, could literally be taken as the balance between good and evil. This is interesting because the traveler often offers Young Goodman Brown the staff almost as if he is offering Young Goodman Brown the temptation to tip the balance. For example, he tells Goodman Brown that he knows his father which plants a seed of doubt within his belief system. Soon the temptation to further follow the traveler enables Goodman Brown to see that evil is in everyone that surrounds him. Ultimately, when the traveler offers the serpent staff to Goodman Brown and he refuses, it symbolizes his desire to resist temptation to all the evil in the
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