Short Story Analysis - Felps 1 Kendall Felps ENGL 203-515 Dr Harris March 5th 2015 Short Story Analysis#3 Supernatural Short Stories Numerous short

Short Story Analysis - Felps 1 Kendall Felps ENGL 203-515...

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Felps Kendall Felps ENGL 203-515 Dr. Harris March 5 th , 2015 Short Story Analysis, #3 Supernatural Short Stories Numerous short stories in literature involve supernatural, fantasy, or magical references that make them more stimulating and appealing to the reader. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown, Gabriel Márquez’s “Very Old Man with Enormous Wings”, and Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Black Cat” all have noticeable allusions to the supernatural world. The use of imagery in these three short stories helps transmit a supernatural sensation upon the reader by using subliminal connections to other stories and historical events, literary devices, and character archetypes. Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown” focuses on Goodman Brown, a married man living in the village of Salem, a town famous for being involved with magic and witch trials. In the late 1600s, several hundred people were accused of practicing witchcraft and worshiping the devil, and became involved in the Salem Witch Trials. It’s suggested that Brown’s ancestors were involved in the trials and executing people, and Brown carries the burden of what his family did. Brown has an obvious mistrust of the supernatural world, and refuses the advances of the devil himself when confronted in the woods. Brown states “My father never went into the woods on such an errand, nor his father before him. We have been a race of honest men and good Christians, since the days of the martyrs.” (555). Brown clearly considerers himself to be a true Christian and values his religion highly. 1
Felps Hawthorne’s diction and use of dark imagery make the reader feel as if they are in the forest with Brown, walking alongside him on his journey. For example, as Brown is traveling he picks up a branch: “As they went he plucked a branch of maple, to serve as a walking-stick, and began to trip it of the twigs and little boughs, which were wet with evening dew. The moment his fingers touched them, they became strangely withered and dried up…” (557). Hawthorne hints at magic with the fact that the leaves wither as soon as Brown lays his hands upon them; basically, anything Brown touches dies. It is also made clear that the people gathering were not doing so

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