The Romantic Period: Nathaniel Hawthorne
This paper examines three of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s works that demonstrate his characterization as a Romantic writer.
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This paper begins with a discussion of the Romantic Period, and then turns to Nathaniel Hawthorne, a writer of that time. Three of his works, Young Goodman Brown, The Minister’s Black Veil, and The Scarlet Letter are discussed as examples of writings of the Romantic Period.
The Romantic Period can be characterized by four things, a return to nature and to belief in the goodness of humanity; the rediscovery of the artist as a supremely individual creator; the development of nationalistic pride; and the exaltation of the senses and emotions over reason and intellect (Encyclopedia.com). Nathaniel Hawthorne is one writer whose work is generally classified as Romantic. By looking at three of his important works, we can see how Hawthorne meets the criteria of a Romantic and also how Hawthorne goes beyond this definition, not only making a comment on the place of humans, but actively encouraging all humans to reconsider their place in the world.