Would you say that Goodman Brown was heroic in the story "Young Good man Brown"?I have to argue either he was or was not a hero in the short story. I believe he was. I would just like other opinions.

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timbrady's profile pic

timbrady | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted on

I'm afraid I'll have to disagree, unless you define the hero as the main character.  Since he's just about the only character in the story, he would "win" on that account.

But his behavior is not heroic as I see it.  Instead of facing his fears, investigating the visions/stories/whatever he experiences/ to see what is "real," he assumes that what he experiences in the woods, and remember it's not clear that he experienced anything, is true.  If he were in any way heroic, he would have fought through these experiences to see what was true, and then acted upon what he found.

Instead, he takes the role of a coward, believes the "easy" things he thinks he saw in the forest, and that faliure destroys his life.

Nothing heroic here.

cldbentley's profile pic

cldbentley | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted on

In my opinion, Goodman Brown is indeed a heroic figure in the story "Young Goodman Brown."  Goodman Brown confronts situations and characters who would have been terrifying to anyone, which takes a tremendous amount of courage.  In observing the frightening scenes he finds himself encountering, Goodman Brown exhibits a great amount of bravery and self-control, which are certainly heroic traits. Throughout all of this, Goodman Brown maintains his sense of right and wrong, his ethics, and his "innocence," each of which is indicative of a true hero.  Turning away from wrong and persevering as a moral man who is true to himself is heroic.

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