Incidences that occur in one’s childhood tend to affect them possibly for the rest of the rest of their life. This applies to the novel Fifth Business and the characters Dunstan Ramsey and Boy Staunton. Throughout the lives of these characters Dunstan lives in the shadow of Boy due to feelings of guilt and responsibility as a result of one winter evening in the town of Deptford.
As Boy and Dunny grew up together they were each others best friends and also worst enemies, but they were on basically equal terms in their childish trials of life. This remained to be true until that winter day in Deptford when Mrs. Dempster was struck with a snowball that was meant for Dunny. Since that point in time Dunny, being the more caring and excepting of responsibility for other peoples problems, of the two, has not lived up to par with the life of Boy Staunton.
Ever since the snowball accident Dunny has been preoccupied by worrying over Mary Dempster, and now her son Paul. At the age of sixteen the small town of Deptford becomes too much for Dunny to handle so he decides to drop out of secondary school and join the Army. Dunny needed a change in his life, something to get his mind off Mrs. Dempster and the guilt he felt for her. Leading up to his departure to the War he never really saw much of Mary, mainly because Mr. Dempster told him to stay away, but also because every time him saw her he couldn’t hold back feelings of guilt and remorse. This troubled Dunny, much more then he would ever let on. On the other hand, Boy was doing as well as ever, possibly due to the fact that he knew that much of the responsibility of Mary and Paul was securely on the shoulders of Dunny. Dunny knew this as well but it was too late to do much about it except leave.
While Dunny was away at war, Boy was still finishing school and in the process of stealing Dunny’s girl while he was away. Boy and Dunstan had been competing for Leola all their life up until when Dunny left. This loss for Dunstan could have been avoided if in fact he had not accepted responsibility for the snowball incident he wouldn’t have had to leave and therefore could have kept Leola.
Minister’s Black Veil Essays: Father Hooper
Father Hooper The Ministers Black Veil
Father Hooper wears a black veil over his eyes and nose, never revealing the reason of the veil to a soul. At times the sexton would insinuate a reason behind the veil but never revealing the answer to the mystery. Father Hooper is a very imaginative and creative individual to innovate the idea of wearing a black veil to express an idea. He is angry towards the response of the veil to his parishioners, since they treated him differently with the veil compared to without it. Most of the parishioners are clueless to why he wears it and some try to imagine why he would ever want to wear it, but there are only ideas and arguments to why a minister would wear it.
One of the reasons behind the veil might be secret sin. Father Hooper might have committed a very bad sin, which he does not want to unveil to anyone. Instead of not telling anyone the sin he shows it clearly on his face with the aid of a black veil. This black veil might relieve tension in his body that has accumulated due to his sin. In the story, Father Hooper says that everyone wears a black veil, meaning that everyone commits secret sins without revealing them to anyone. If you do not express your secret sin you would be keeping stress and tension locked up inside you, but if you express it, the stress and tension will be relieved.
Another reason behind the veil might be sorrow. Deep, dark sorrow for someone or yourself might be expressed and shown with the help of a black veil. By wearing the black veil for eternity, you are exhibiting great love and sorrow for someone or yourself. If the black veil was removed, the sorrow and love would be dead. This might be how Reverend Hooper expresses the veil.
Father Hooper might have also used the veil as a friend and a device to test Elizabeth’s love for him. The black veil might have given Mr. Hooper friendship if he was lonely and without a mate. He could test Elizabeth to see if an object would come between them and their love. The Reverend told her if she was his, the black veil would then be removed.