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Flawed Characters of Young Goodman Brown, Rappaccini’s Daughter, and The Birthmark

Flawed Characters of Young Goodman Brown, Rappaccini’s Daughter, and The Birthmark

In many of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short stories, he creates characters

with either a malicious or evil feature to relay to the reader a more

allegorical meaning. Many would say he targets woman without justification.

Therefore a reader may interpret him to be a misogynist. In the story ”

Rapaccinni’s Daughter” he uses Beatrice as a carrier of a deadly poison. In ”

Young Goodman Brown” he targets Faith as the character who is lost to the Devil.

In the stories “Rappaccini’s Daughter,” and “The Birthmark,” Hawthorne also uses

men as transmitters of evil illicitly. The men involved in the stories have

their own flaws which contribute to the flaws of the women in their lives.

Ultimately, Hawthorne in the cases above can be seen as a misogynist who directs

his maliciousness on only women, yet he also uses male characters as vile

transmitters of evil, therefore he is not a misogynist and targets both sexes


In Young Goodman Brown, Faith, the wife of Young Goodman Brown is a

character who loses her faith and submits to the Devil. Hawthorne, in this case

directly uses faith as the carrier of a flaw. That is, she does not contain

enough self-control, or faith to refuse the calling of the Devil. Even with the

emotional plea from her husband, “Look up to heaven, and resist the wicked one,”

(1590) Faith cannot resist the Devil’s temptation and has “uncertain sorrow,”

(1587) after submitting to him. The character of Faith which Hawthorne

portrays is one of uncertainty and one which has a lack of self control. Faith

is a good example of how Hawthorne uses a woman to symbolize a deeper

significance, in this case, it is to evoke the hypocrisy of the Puritan people,

that is, Puritans are really not as pure as we all think, they also contain evil

characteristics, in this case, exploited at night. We cannot justify Hawthorne’s

usage of Faith as misogyny, in that woman were not considered equal in status

to men in the early 16th and later centuries. Also, with the history of

witchcraft during the puritan era, it can be seen appropriate that Hawthorne

The Success of Title IX

Sports is a powerful force in society today. People of all ages and both sexes watch and participate in different sports in increasing numbers. Equal opportunity to participate in sports seems like a right that is natural and would be a common sense issue, but unfortunately this has not always been the case. In 1972 Congress enacted the Education Amendments of 1972, this contains Title IX which was intended to ensure that discrimination based on sex was eliminated. The area that this has had the most contentious impact is sports. Has Title IX increased women’s opportunities to participate in sports during college equitably and fairly? Title IX has increased opportunities for women to participate in college sports programs with minimal impact on men’s sports programs.

Title IX was meant to eliminate discrimination against women at any institution that receives funds from the federal government. One portion states “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” (Title 20 U.S.C.). This is the basis for the entire debate concerning Title IX. Under this law all activities that colleges and universities offer must be offered without regard to gender. This has not been a problem except for sports. Sports has long been dominated by men. Historically men have had a higher interest in sports and this was perpetuated by the notion that athletic women were not attractive. Add to this the money that men’s sports generates and we have a very entrenched tradition. This is the establishment that Title IX was meant to combat.


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….” The Chronicle of Higher Education. Washington; Dec. 4, 1998.

Naughton, Jim. “Clarification of Title IX may leave many colleges in violation over to athletes.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. Washington; July 31, 1998.

Sabo, Don. “Women’s athletics and the elimination of men’s sports.” Journal of Sport

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