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Critical Essay | Critical Essay by James L. Williamson

This literature criticism consists of approximately 14 pages of analysis & critique of Critical Essay by James L. Williamson.
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Critical Essay by James L. Williamson

SOURCE: “‘Young Goodman Brown’: Hawthorne's ‘Devil in Manuscript,’” in Studies in Short Fiction, Vol. 18, No. 2, Spring, 1981, pp. 155-62.

In the following essay, Williamson suggests that Hawthorne exhibits a gleeful, mocking narrative persona in “Young Goodman Brown” in order to expose pretensions about life and literature.

When Hawthorne commented on the vocation of authorship, he was often drawn to analogies between writing and damnation. “… authors,” he wrote with tongue-in-cheek in 1821, “are always poor devils, and therefore Satan may take them.”1 The pun is on “devil,” which can mean a literary hack; and the meaning is clear: to write conventionally and without integrity is to damn oneself as a writer, even at the cost of popularity...

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This section contains 4,089 words
(approx. 14 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Critical Essay by James L. Williamson - Critical Essay by James L. Williamson
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