An Essay On Nathaniel Hawthorne's "My Kinsman, Major Molineux."

568 words - 3 pages

In Nathaniel Hawthorne's story, "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" his writing style revels his feelings toward Major Molineux. There are several ways to determine how Hawthorne felt about Major Molineux. His diction, tone, and selection can help evaluate the author's attitude towards Robin's kinsman.Hawthorne chooses certain words and uses them in, either a positive or negative connotation to express to the reader his feelings for a character. One example, "...and there, in tar-and-feathery dignity, sat his kinsman, Major Molineux!" Hawthorne is telling the reader that although the Major has been humiliated, he still retains some dignity within himself. The phrase tar-and-feathery dignity is an oxymoron, yet Hawthorne decided to combine them. This shows ...view middle of the document...

This might tell the reader that the story has stopped and will take a different turn. It could also give the reader a feeling that something is about to happen to the main character. It shows that Hawthorne wanted to make the moment before the Major's entrance a dramatic one.Sometimes the way a sentence is written or the words used may cause the reader to develop concrete images about the story and what is taking place within it. The reader develops certain images to help them understand the story. For example, "His face was pale as death, and far more ghastly; the broad forehead contracted in agony..." gives the reader a concrete image. This makes a reader think of a person who is pale and thin almost to the point of death. "His whole frame was agitated by a quick and continual tremor, which his pride strove to quell, even in those circumstances of overwhelming humiliation." Hawthorne wanted to show the reader that the Major went through a terrible ordeal within the town and he still tried to maintain some of his dignity and pride. He knew that the Major was humiliated but he had some respect for him because he was able to keep some of his dignity.In conclusion, certain words, and phrases can help the reader understand how the author feels about different characters. Hawthorne felt some respect for Major Molineux because he was able to maintain at least some of his dignity after being humiliated. He also realized that the Major may not have deserved as much humiliation and disrespect as the townspeople thought he deserved. The Major had not only been humiliated by his experience but also upset. "On they went, in counterfeited pop, in senseless uproar, in frenzied merriment, trampling all on an old man's heart."

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