Nathaniel Hawthorne Weaves Dreams Into Much of His

This essay Nathaniel Hawthorne Weaves Dreams Into Much of His has a total of 1417 words and 6 pages.

Nathaniel Hawthorne Weaves Dreams Into Much of His 19th Century Prose

ENG 1015, Sec. 331
March 19, 1997

Nathaniel Hawthorne Weaves Dreams into Reality in
Much of His 19th Century Prose


Nathaniel Hawthorne, a master of American fiction, often utilizes dreams within the annals of
his writings to penetrate, explore and express his perceptions of the complex moral and spiritual conflicts that plague mankind. His clever, yet crucial purpose for using dreams is to represent, through symbolism, the human divergence conflict manifested in the souls of man during the firm Christian precepts of the Era in which he lived. As a visionary in an extremely conservative Puritanical society, he carefully and successfully manages to depict humanity\'s propensity for sin and secrecy, and any resulting punishment or atonement by weaving dreams into his tales. The dreams he refers to in many of his writings are heavily symbolic due to his Christian foundation, and they imply that he views most dreams as a pigmentation of reality. Hawthorne\'s ability to express and subsequently bring to fruition the true state of man\'s sinful nature by parallelling dreams with reality represents not only his religious beliefs but also his true mastery of observation regarding the human soul.
An examination of Hawthorne\'s own narrative in his short story, The Birthmark, published in 1850 during the latter part of the period of Puritanism expands his observations of mankind with keen insight.
Truth often finds its way to the mind close-muffled
in robes of sleep, and then speaks with uncompromising
directness of matters in regard to which we practice
an unconscious self-deception, during our waking
moments. (par.15)
The prophetic statement was made by Hawthorne to open the reader\'s mind and perhaps inject an introspective glimpse of his perspective that dreams do indeed contain precursors or warnings of future conscious realities. He also contends that people often purposely disregard the contents of their dreams and do not face the realities that they are confronted with while in unconscious moments of slumber. Hawthorne\'s writings are marked by intrinsic depth and a sincere desire to crawl inside of the characters he has created. He accomplishes this objective by allowing them to dream. He makes his presence known by frequently commenting openly throughout his prose and interject a narrative of his assertions. Hawthorne

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