What examples in "The Minister's Black Veil" and "The Fall of the House of Usher" illustrate Nathaniel Hawthorne's and Edgar Allan Poe's views on humanity's evil nature?

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Both of the short stories "The Minister's Black Veil," by Nathaniel Hawthorne, and "The Fall of the House of Usher," by Edgar Allan Poe, deal with the theme of the evil of human nature. However, Hawthorne presents all of human nature as naturally tending towards evil, whereas Poe only portrays certain types of evil, such as the ability for mankind to be incestuous out of prideful, arrogant desires.

In "The Minister's Black Veil," Mr. Hooper, the village minister, begins daily wearing a black veil for mysterious reasons. While a veil typically symbolizes mourning and sorrow, the villagers saw the veil as representing so much more though they were unsure of what. The veil both terrifies the villagers and makes them feel drawn to Mr. Hooper. As the story progresses, we learn that Mr. Hooper used the veil to symbolize the evil natures that all human beings try to hide.

We first see the connection between the veil and evil when we learn, while wearing the veil, Mr. Hooper became very effective in...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 1223 words.)

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