| November 29, 2016

How does Alymer in “The Birthmark” show the conflict between science and religion in Hawthorne’s era?

Do you think Georgiana knew she was going to die after reading Aylmer’s portfolio of experiments? Or did she truly have faith in her husband to remove “the hand”?
How does the setting of “Young Goodman Brown” function symbolically?
Hawthorne throws a wrench in the end of “Young Goodman Brown” by implying it could have been a dream. Do you think he was dreaming, or was it real? Does this matter? Why or why not?
In “The Minister’s Black Veil,” how does the veil affect the townspeople’s perception of him? How does it affect his fiancée?
Would it make a difference is Hooper himself told the story in first person? What might we learn?

“Young Goodman Brown”
Background: Salem witch trials
“The Birthmark”
Background: the Enlightenment struggle between science and faith
“The Minister’s Black Veil”
Background: American Gothic

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