ENG 1101 Fall 2021 0277

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  • Sept. 16 questions about "Young Goodman Brown"
  • #74889

    Prof. Masiello

    Questions about the reading:

    “Young Goodman Brown” is a classic short story. It has all the trappings: relatively brief length, very few characters, and a surprise ending. Please don’t be put off by the archaic language. It was written almost 200 years ago and was current at that time. You may know the author’s name from another book he wrote, The Scarlet Letter, which has a similar setting, Salem, Massachusetts.

    1) What do you know about Salem, Massachusetts? (You may Google it.)

    2) What did you find unusual about the characters’ names?

    3) Can you think of any stories you have read or seen wherein the characters’ names seemed so appropriate and even symbolic? (We are not talking about nicknames, wrestlers, rappers, or superheroes, and supervillains.)

    4) What object is associated with his wife’s appearance? We see it more than once. What does it symbolize about her?

    5) Approximately what age would you estimate Goodman and his wife to be? They are recently married, but back then people married very young. (The general life span was much less than today, people did not go to college, and it was considered highly immoral to have sex before marriage – hence young people got married young.)

    6) Why does this newlywed young man leave his nervous wife on this particular night? Where was he going and why?

    7) At what point did you begin to sense that something odd was happening where he was walking?

    8) Mention a few other highly unusual things he saw? (If you ever went camping in the woods, you realize it is very dark and not a place to be walking around.)

    9) Eventually, he gets to his destination. What exactly is happening there?

    10) When he sees that “wife object” how does he react?

    11) At one point he cries out, “My Faith is gone!” What is the double meaning of this?

    12) Who has been narrating this story? (Hawthorn is the author, of course, but is the author omniscient or a character, or some other combination? Why then does the narrator ask if all this story was a dream?

    13) Does it matter to you if the story has been a dream or not? Can you think of any stories wherein a terrific plot or sequence turned out to be just a dream? Were you disappointed or exhilarated by finding out it was a dream?

    14) Look at what happens to Goodman and the rest of his life. Have you ever been influenced by a dream to take some action? Or do you quickly forget your dreams? Are you yourself disappointed or relieved when you wake up from a dream?

    15) The author seems to be pessimistic about people: they are essentially bad, even if they try to act good. How do you feel about that? Do you feel people are basically good or bad – and why?


    Jaheim Wilson

    1) I know Salem, Massachusetts is famous for where the Witch Trials occurred. As a result of mass hysteria within the village, many innocent people were killed.

    2) I find that the character names are so strange. Their names are symbolic of themes and their ideals within the story. The main character is literally named “Goodman” Brown, while is wife is named “Faith”.

    3) No I have nothing in mind.

    4) The object that symbolizes his wife is the pink ribbon. I believe that her ribbons symbolize a sense of purity or morality.

    5) I would estimate that both Goodman and Faith are in their early twenties.

    6) He was leaving to go to a evil ceremony.The purpose might be a cleansing of sin.

    7) I noticed something was wrong when he enters the forest and it becomes really dark. These areas are where something sinister hides.

    8) Things became stranger as he goes deeper into it, the forest becomes more ominous. The amounts of trees started to grow and become thicker like it’s hiding something dark.

    9) When he gets there he sees trees on fire, and the faces of everyone from the town.

    10) When he sees the pink ribbon he freaks out and is heartbroken seeing his wife lost to evil.

    11) When is says his faith is gone he is saying both his wife and his own faith has been lost to the darkness.

    12) I believe the story is mainly a mix of third person with the author omniscient, and first person with Goodman Brown speaking.

    13) While I haven’t read any stories where it was a dream. If that was the case my reaction would depend on what the dream was. If it described something terrible I would be glad that wasn’t what actually happened. But if it was positive I would be dissapointed.

    14) I haven’t really been influenced by a dream. When I was younger I could easily remember what I dreamed but now I can hardly remember them

    15) I personally believe that we are not perfect. We all have our good and bad sides. That is what makes us human. But I usually try to see the good in people.



    1) I know that Salem Massachusetts I know for its witch craft

    2) their names are not common names as they represent something else

    3) In the book “Things fall apart” by Chinua Achebe the main Charters name was Okonkwo which mean Male pride and stubbornness

    4) the Pink ribbon is associated with faith. it symbolizes her kindness and purity

    5) I would estimate them to be around 18

    6) Why does this newlywed young man leave his nervous wife on this particular night? Where was he going and why?

    7) something odd was happening where he was walking when the forest became to seem more sinister as he started to here voices

    8) He saw the trees on fire

    9) there is a convergent where his wife if going to be babelize by the devil and everyone in town is there

    10) he breaks down in tears as his wife was going somewhere without her telling him

    11) he meant that his Wife faith was no longer her perfect self and that he lost his faith in his wife Faith

    12) The narration is a mix between third person as it describes the setting and first person and we see what Goodman sees

    13) It did matter that it was a dream because there was a raising action that stop immediately when he woke up. I was a bit disappointed because I wanted to see what happened next

    14) sometimes I would imagine something terrible happening to me and waking up being reveled I was a dream

    15) I feel that that’s no true because I feel that people act depending on how they were raised



    1. What I know about Salem, Massachusetts is it was known as witchcraft.
    2. What I found unusual from a character’s name is not like any other in the story where the character’s name fits with the story where it has a meaning of what is going to happen within the story.
    3. I can’t really think of one. Maybe Iron man.
    4. The pink ribbon symbolizes the wife of her own personality where she’s kind and thoughtful.
    5. Both the husband and wife would probably be somewhere in 19 or 20.
    6. He left to go to the evil ceremony where he can see all the sins.
    7. As when he was walking in the forest the voices were all the sinister were at.
    8. As going into the dark in the forest you will notice it will get more creeper where the climate may change or even the trees are changing.
    9. He saw the tree get on fire.
    10. When he saw the object of pink ribbon from his wife he knew something went wrong and he went heartbroken.
    11. The double meaning of this is where he describes both he and his wife loses it when entering that forest full of darkness.
    12. I think it is different where one narrator is speaking in third person mode while the main character is in the first person. The narrator asked if it was a dream because all of this seemed probable to fake that it would come to this and there are different types of reality probably?
    13. Depends if the dream is terrifying or amazing but is just a weird feeling of having it be a dream where it could be true or not. I wouldn’t know the situation if I experience it before but if I did in a dream I would change everything that I’ve done. I wouldn’t be the happy or sad cause as long it is a dream.
    14. I would mostly forget after waking up from a dream because it could be bad or good which I don’t want to experience since it could destroy my day depending. I would love to wake up from a dream where I can just relax and keep sleeping instead of me stressing out.
    15. Depending on how they were raised and everyone could never be perfect unless they were treated differently than how others were treated so it really depends who taught this to you.


    Jose Martinez

    1. Salem is a town in Massachusetts, it is primarily known for being associated for the Witch trials that occurred in the 1600’s.
    2. The characters’ names are symbolic, Goodman and Faith are both names, but they also have meanings that play throughout the story,
    3. As Michael said, I also read “Things fall apart” and Okonkwo’s name had a name that foreshadowed the ending.
    4. Throughout the text, the character Faith is always mentioned along with her pink ribbon. I think it means purity and obviously faith, the faith that Goodman has for God.
    5. I would guess Faith and Goodman to be in their 20’s.
    6. He went on a journey to an evil ceremony, to clear the sins.
    7. As Goodman kept walking through the forrest, the voices heard were sinister, creating an eerie feeling.
    8. The further Goodman went into the forrest the more darker it got. The trees grew in numbers making it extremely eerie.
    9. Goodman started to see the people of the town including his wife. He also saw a tree on fire.
    10. Goodman saw his wife’s ribbon and immediately lost his “Faith”
    11. The double meaning is he lost his wife and his faith in God, mainly because he saw his wife get lost in darkness.
    12. The author uses both third and first person throughput the text. He uses first person to display Goodman’s thoughts just to give us insight on Goodman’s feelings.
    13. The story being represented as a dream changes the concept completely. It shows as a slight sign that maybe he has to think about his actions and future decisions.
    14. Sometimes I feel like I have dreams that give me signs, but it honestly depends on the dream.
    15. I feel like actions create the person, everyone is born good and the things that one might go through might change them for the worst.


    Osman Hassan

    What I know about Salem, Massachusetts is the Salem Witch Trials where

    They are not at all common and most seem to have a characteristic embedded in them. For example Goodman Brown and Goody Cloyse

    3) I can’t really think of any.

    4) The pink ribbons are associated with his wife which symbolizes purity which can be attributed to her name, Faith.

    5) They both to me seem young so I believe around 18-23

    6)He goes to something referred to as the evil ceremony, having something to do with his sins

    7) When he started hearing the screams and voices.

    8) The rock that resembled an altar, the tree on fire, anything that hinted towards human interaction would be very unsettling if I was not previously aware of their existence.

    9) There is a gathering of people of his town and most notably his wife.

    10) He is heartbroken at the thought that his wife was harmed

    11) His wife, Faith, was gone (in his eyes) and he also lost his religious faith

    12) Brown is narrating the story, though he goes between third person to describe the setting, and first person to describe what he is feeling/thinking.

    13) If the story is a dream it can be seen as a portrayal of his anxiety and insecurities. I can think of final destination where it starts off with a dream which shows the many graphic ways people die. When you the viewer realizes its a dream they are relieved … until the dream starts playing out in real life.

    14) A very vivid dream sticks with me for a couple of days and makes me wonder about what I dreamt and what it means, but after that it completely slips my mind. I am most times disappointed when I wake up from a dream because I am kicked out of the world I felt was so real and for seemingly so long.

    15) I feel people are affected by their environment growing up which may make them behave “good” or “bad” to certain people. At the same time it begs the question, should they be given credit or be held responsible for being a result of their environment?



    1) From just the name alone I remember reading about Salem, Massachusetts, and everything about the witch trials that occurred over there.
    2) While reading I noticed that the names weren’t names I would usually come across but most of the names would have meaning behind them due to their symbolism behind it
    3) I can’t exactly think of any stories with characters that have symbolic names. The closest one I had in mind was probably Macbeth? I’m not too sure, some had meaning behind their names but some were difficult to understand.
    4) The object that is associated with the wife would be the pink ribbon which would go on to symbolizing her purity and kindness.
    5) I estimated that both Goodman and Faith were most likely in their early 20’s. Just a guess.
    6) He left his wife that night because he had to travel to an evil ceremony, where apparently they would see all their sins.
    7) I began to sense something was off immediately after it became darker in the woods he was walking in and also due to the fact that he heard sinister voices.
    8) A few other things that occurred would literally be the world changing around him as the woods become weirder by the second.
    9) When he arrived at the destination he saw everyone in town gathered who were around a burning tree.
    10) After seeing his wife’s ribbon he immediately broke down think the worst had happened to her.
    11) When he cried out “Faith” he meant that he had lost hope and had also lost an important person in his life.
    12) There are two narrators in this story, one from first person and another from third person, both are there to give a clear image of what was happening.
    13) It would not have mattered to me if it was a dream or not. I cannot think of any stories other than this one where the whole sequence was a dream. I was exhilarated to find out it was a dream.
    14) I would forget about my dream quickly but I would also be disappointed when I do remember them as some moments in my dreams where something good happens and then I finally realize it wasn’t actually real.
    15) Not all people are “good”, never forget that some people might not seem who they actually are, such as faking a persona to fit in or stuff they generally do when you are not around.


    1) Salem, Massachusetts is known for the Salem witch trials of 1692.

    2) Their names contain common English words, like faith and goodman.

    3) I can think of Lennie Small in of mice and men whose name was ironic because he was a huge man.

    4) His wife was associated with the cap she wore that had pink ribbons. The pink ribbons symbolize purity.

    5) They were probably in their early twenties.

    6) He went into a forest to meet evil people and witches.

    7) I realized something was wrong when he met the people and they decided to keep walking into the forest. It was already unclear what he was going to do in the forest, but once he met up with two random people without much greeting and kept going, I sensed that something odd was happening.

    8) The staff of a serpent that the old man was carrying was very unusual. The fact that he was taking such a narrow path in a forest at night was also unusual, especially because it was described to be so narrow that it closed up immediately when you looked behind.

    9) He is walking with two people who are on their way to an evil ceremony.

    10) He starts to cry out in agony and desperation because he didn’t believe that his wife, of all people, would also turn her back on god. He also starts to doubt his faith in god because everyone has turned to evil.

    11) The double meaning of “My Faith is gone!” is that Goodman Brown’s wife has turned to the devil, but also that he is losing trust in his faith because everyone around him turned to the devil as well.

    12) It seems like it could just be someone telling a story to people, like how someone would tell a scary story, or pass down stories that they heard from others. I think the narrator asks if it was a dream because he doesn’t know himself.


    Obrien Eastman

    1. What I know about Salem, Massachusetts is it was known as witchcraft.

    2. What I found unusual from a character’s name has common English words such as Goodman Brown, Faith and Goody Cloyse.

    3. I can’t think of one.

    4. His wife wore a cap that had pink ribbons that symbolize purity.

    5. Both the husband and wife is probably in their early 20s.

    6. He left to go to the evil ceremony where he can see all the sins.

    7. I noticed something was odd after it became darker in the woods he was walking in and also the voices of the sinister.

    8. Going into the dark in the forest you will notice it will get more creeper where the climate may change or even the trees are changing.

    9. When Goodman got there he sees trees on fire, and the faces of everyone from the town including his wife.

    10. When he saw the pink ribbon he immediately broke down thinking his wife was harmed.

    11. The double meaning of this is where he describes him losing faith as in his wife and literal as in his religious.

    12. I think it is different where a narrator is speaking in third person mode while the main character is in the first person. The narrator asked if it was a dream because all of this seemed fake.

    13. It don’t really matter to me if it was a dream or not but the story was very interesting and the way it was presented was if it was real, I was slightly disappointed because it was really interesting.

    14. I feel like dreams sometimes could be signs but most of the times I have terrible nightmares when I sleep so I try to not think about dreaming and even if I do get a dream depending if its good or bad it doesn’t really bother me.

    15. Nobody is perfect but its about how they act and carry themselves then I can really judge a person, first impressions are important.



    1. I know that it has to do with the Salem witch trials. Where they basically accused and killed a bunch of people for being a witch and being the devil’s servant. I’m not sure if they were the ones who had these tests but they had these stupid tests. That was supposed to be so smart but most of these tests made no sense and caused so many to die.

    2. Their names had to do with the story like faith and Goodman also the deacons name being the goody

    3. So this is a movie it’s called fear street definitely recommend but it’s similar to this story where the characters name are symbolic even the locations name, for example, shadyvill and sunnyside as you can see from their names on the place is known for it being dangerous and depressing but the other is a successful happy place also the character nick goode name being Goode but being a terrible person

    4. Her pink ribbon I think it symbolizes that’s she pure also his motivation

    5. I wanna say Goodman and faith are probably 16-18 I say this because if young people couldn’t have sex before marriage that means they were just tryna get married to have sex because around that age you wanna explore those options.

    6. I think he left to go to the ceremony to me it sounded like a family tradition to go but also remember him speaking about some dream so IDK

    7. When he starts to describe the walking stick as a snake usually represent evil

    8. When he starts to hear sinister voices even though he’s supposed to be alone in the forests

    9. All the people from the town are their including his wife also trees set on fire

    10. To me he’s seemed motivated to save his wife he became less fearful of the forest in hopes to save her

    11. This is lowkey funny cuz he’s talking about his faith in religion but also his wife at that moment he lost both

    12. I think it was Goodman narrating the story

    13. No, I think dreams can be more terrifying than real life and if the ending is a sad one then it being a dream makes it a better ending. The only one I can think of is A Christmas Carol. I didn’t feel anyway finding out it was a dream

    14. So the reason I say dreams can be more terrifying than real life is that I often had nightmares at one point in my life where it happened every night and at the time I didn’t know how to cope with them so that and school lead to depression cuz I wasn’t trying to sleep until my body just fell or couldn’t sleep in my bed cuz then I had nightmares but a lot of these nightmares where people trying to harm me so it leads to me being wary and aggressive towards others. Now that I know how to control my dreams I’m only disappointed when I wake up. If it was a really really good dream or if I’m having a dream where I’m fighting and I feel I didn’t win then I’m disappointed.

    15. There is no black or white when it comes to people I think it depends on the person and what they’ve done wrong if they’ve done something that negatively affected someone and doesn’t try to fix it even if they feel guilty then yes they’re a bad person and to be a good person doesn’t mean you always do the right thing you never lie or steal as long as you face your Consequences and don’t go out your way to negatively affect people then I think you can be considered a good person



    1) Just the Salem Witch Trials.

    2) I wouldn’t say unusual but their names could give away what kind of character they are.

    3) No I can’t think of any

    4) A pink ribbon is always shown with his wife and could symbolize purity.

    5) I would estimate that they are in their very early 20s

    6) He leaves to go to the ceremony.

    7) It started to feel strange when Goodman was starting to hear voices as he went deeper into the forest.

    8) The walking stick is described as a snake and the trees began to change.

    9) When he gets there many people from the town are there including his wife and are surrounding a burning tree.

    10) He starts to cry out because he thought something happened to his wife.

    11) He feels that his wife is gone and has lost faith in the people of the town.

    12) It switches from first to third person throughout the story to give a perspective from a character that’s in the story and someone who is looking on.

    13) It does matter if the story was a dream or not. I can’t name a story off the top of my head but to find out a story was a dream feels like all the problems and tribulations were for nothing.

    14) For the dreams I do remember I choose to just leave them alone. They’re just dreams. I am disappointed when they end especially if it was a good dream.

    15) I don’t believe everyone is bad but I don’t think everyone is good either. It’s a matter of perspective.



    1) The Salem Witch Trials

    2) Nothing unusual about the names just reminded me of Earlier English nicknames.

    3) I feel as though The Diary of Wimpy Kid books, the names of the characters really fit them and gave an insight what type of person they were.

    4) The Pink Ribbon it resembles how pure she is.

    5) I can predict they were in their early 20’s

    6) He was going to the ceremony

    7) When he started hearing voices and the evil symbols.

    8) The tree began to change and the voices.

    9) When he gets there, their are many people he is familiar with, and the burning tree he see’s.

    10) When he sees the ribbon he starts crying thinking something happened to his wife.

    11) The double meaning is that, He thinks that wife is gone and he points out he lost faith.

    12) There are 2 narrators one telling the story in a 3rd person perspective and the other one was a main character.

    13) It depends on what movie and what show, I cant put one to mind on when did I encounter something like that but I was upset because it was too good to actually be a dream this whole time.


    Dmitry Terentyev

    (a) Salem, Massachusetts was a city near Boston which is famous for its witch trials in the 1692, and where locals were killed for alleged practice of witchcraft.

    (b) The name of major characters is “Goodman” and “faith”. While the names indicate that characters are pure, they are quite the opposite of it as the story reveals that faith also converted to devil.

    (c) A lot of the characters from the movie ‘Inside Out’ are the names of various emotions of a human being, like Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear. All these character have the exact personalities as the names suggest.

    (d) The pink ribbon. I believe it symbolizes her purity. When Goodman is in the forest, he sees her ribbon flying which suggests that she has lost her purity by coming here.

    (e) Considering people married young back in the day and this couple is recently married, I would guess they both are in their late teens, maybe eighteen or nineteen.

    (f) He leaves in order to attend an evil ceremony. I believe his curiosity might have forced him to go see what was happening in the ceremony.

    (g) I started suspecting something suspicious when he enters the forest because it is a really dark and thick forest.

    (h) the old man’s serpent staff was very unusual and spooky because serpents are generally associated with the devil. Also the horses that were travelling along the road was quite unusual considering they were in the middle of nowhere in a dark forest.

    (i) When he reaches the destination, where ceremony was happening, he sees that the trees are on fire around the ceremony. Many highly reputable people of the village were also present there and participating in the ceremony. It seemed like it was like an announcement of all the people who converted towards the devil and lost their innocence and faith as a result.

    (j) He is shocked when he sees his wife’s ribbon.

    (k) One meaning of “my Faith is gone” is suggesting that he no longer recognizes his wife, the woman who was pure and innocent and the one because of whose goodness, his faith and belief was strong. The other meaning can be that upon seeing so many reputable and good willed people of the village in this ceremony, along with his pure wife, he has lost faith in the goodness of this world.

    (l) We see Goodman’s perspective a lot where he becomes the narrator. Other than that, there is also a narration by third person.

    (m) To me, it would not matter even if the story was a dream. Because it still would have impacted Goodman’s psyche a lot and he still would have found it difficult to trust people around him. The only story I can think of is from the movie “Fight Club”. (Spoiler alert) Even though it was not a dream and the main character suffered from personality disorder, it isn’t revealed to the audience till the very end, which makes it an exciting and shocking twist in the story.

    (n) I tend to remember my dreams for some time after waking and because they are mostly quite insignificant, I forget them quickly. And no, i never had a dream where I would be tempted to take an action. If I am enjoying the dream, then I would definitely be disappointed upon waking, and similarly, if the dream is scary then I’ll be glad when I wake up.

    (o) I do not think it is as black and white as this. There are many people who are genuinely good and many who are sometimes good and sometimes bad. So it would be unfair to classify humans is just good and bad.

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