Nathaniel Hawthorne Short Fiction Analysis
Nathaniel Hawthorne’s reading in American colonial history confirmed his basically ambivalent attitude toward the American past, particularly the form that Puritanism took in the New England colonies. Especially interested in the intensity of the Puritan-Cavalier rivalry, the Puritan inclination to credit manifestations of the supernatural such as witchcraft, and the psychology of the struggle for liberation from English rule, Hawthorne explored these themes in some of his earliest stories. As they did for his Puritan ancestors, sin and guilt preoccupied Hawthorne, who, in his move from Salem to Concord, encountered what he considered the facile dismissal of the problem of evil by the Concord intellectuals. He developed a deeply...
(The entire section is 4057 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of Nathaniel Hawthorne Critical Essays. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!