Does Young Goodman Brown dream the witch’s coven, or does he actually witness it? How do you know? Does it make a difference in your interpretation of the story? What are some of the symbols Hawthorne uses?

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Hawthorne deliberately leaves this an open question and actually poses the question explicitly as part of his narrative.

The purposeful ambiguity is typical of the literature of the period, in which we do not know how much of the outer world is a projection of our own minds. We don't know if the vision is a dream, a hallucination, or a vision the mysterious stranger (the devil, if, in fact, the devil is an actual being) has produced in order to seduce Brown over to what we now refer to as the Dark Side. Yet the very real...

(The entire section contains 285 words.)

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