How do imagination and reality interact in "Young Goodman Brown"? I want it in a type of introduction.

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There is an ambiguity within "Young Goodman Brown" as to whether his vision in the forest actually happened to him, or whether it was a dream. The story does not express a clear answer to this question either way.

As far as this question is concerned, however, it might be useful to consider the story's resolution, rather than the vision in the forest (because there, that ambiguity between imagination and reality does not exist, and one can more clearly discern the ways through which the one influences the other).

Goodman Brown's vision in the forest has destroyed his capacity to trust in the...

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arian23iceman,

Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" is a contrast between imagination and reality. Young Goodman Brown, the protagonist is the title character. The antagonist is ostensibly the devil, the spirit resembling his father (paragraph 13), although the antagonist might also be Brown’s destructive sense of guilt—his projection of his own sinfulness upon others and his consequent damnation of them. The central conflict of the story, which seems lost even before it begins, is within Brown himself: an inner war of love and trust versus suspicion and distrust.

The resolution occurs after Brown’s climactic denial in paragraph 68. Brown’s life is changed after this because his faith in others has been shattered, and therefore he alienates everyone around him. The undeniable reality of the story is that Brown’s journey is a dream, or nightmare. In psychological terms, Brown may be schizophrenic, because his view of others is distorted by his nightmarish convictions. It is probably best, however, to stress that his gloom results from religious fanaticism.

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