Young Goodman Brown and Other Hawthorne Short Stories

Analyze the title character.

Analyze the title character

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Goodman Brown -- "Young Goodman Brown"

Goodman Brown, the title character of this famous short story, is newly married to his wife named Faith. He must journey into the forest with a mysterious character, presumed to be the devil, for an unspecified purpose. Throughout his sojourn into the forest, Goodman Brown is often hesitant about the nature of the trip and even of his companion. However, he sees other respected townspeople entering the forest, presumably toward the same destination.

This destination turns out to be a meeting of witches or otherwise unholy people. Goodman Brown is horrified to recognize many of his neighbors. His wife is also there, and just as he warns her to resist temptation, Brown discovers that he is alone in the forest. He does not know whether he imagined or truly experienced the meeting of witches.

Goodman Brown returns to Salem a wholly changed man who no longer trusts anybody. He leads a miserable life and dies in gloom.