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The Minister's Black Vail As Art

1842 words - 8 pages

Art Is Art Is Hawthorne
When an author (artist) can make his emotions, thoughts, ambitions, and inner self materialize, he has reached the dearest form of art, and the artwork can never mean as much to anyone as it does the one who created it. The artist does not own nor can he interpret completely due to the ever growing life-like attributes that the art/literature has adopted. Therefore, Hawthorne himself could not put into words an interpretation of The Minister's Black Vail because the story its self is an interpretation of something living inside the author, a feeling that can only be felt. In this literary figuration, portrait, there is not a moral. Nathanial Hawthorn used the whole ...view middle of the document...

.. There are technical, recreational, and otherwise artistic uses for all mediums. A small child taking pictures of a puppy with a disposable camera, a reporter taking precise pictures of a sporting event, and an artist taking close-up pictures of the dew as it drips off a tree are all different uses of the same medium in photography. Literature can be created with many different intentions and reasons, but the attempt to determine that something is not art based off of the motivation or intentions of the artist is quit meaningless. Some argue that each literary work constitutes itself and its relation to reality through a master metaphor that is co-extensive with its own body (Allen 1). One can find a good common ground for understanding without being quite as brood and definitive. It would be safer to stay on the idea, for now for sure, of fictional literature being art. This is what The Minister's Black Veil is, art. One thing art is, is the representation of something else. The art itself does not represent its self, but something inside the artist. The Minister's Black Veil is abstract in that it is indirectly representing something within the author himself. What is inside the man that he would want the reader to see? What could the reader possibly experience and be able to relate to the author with, without even knowing it? Isolation and loneliness is what Nathanial Hawthorn wants a reader to feel when he reads The Minister's Black Veil.
Two relevant components of hawthorns art are, "multiple authorship" and his expected audience. Hawthorne had to find a way to communicate his unconventional ideas to a very conventional society. Many of his sketches seem to teeter between the two objectives of open expression and strategic rhetoric. Thomas R. More, in his book a Thick and Darksome Veil, determines from looking at the media in which he published and their reception to his literature that there was a "writing down" and therefore a satirized component to hawthorns literature, especially his sketches. More says that Hawthorne "had to write both with, and against the contemporary parameters of taste" (Moore, 29). This is most evident in The Minister's Black Veil with the footnote on the first page describing a similar event. A man, eighty years before, had done pretty much the same thing as the fictional character, Mr. Hooper (Mcmichael, 632). This is with contemporary taste in that it was a story that was known, so Hawthorne was able to use it to portray his feelings of loneliness. More believed, "Hawthorne's apparent stylistic simplicity is a veil, and that his outward adherence to Blair's rules for ‘structure of sentences,' masks a socially and culturally variant subtext" (Moore, 30)
The second main component of Hawthorne's literary art is the authors behind the stories. Of multiple authorship, Peter Elbow wrote that "always there are two ‘authors' from any text: the implied author as it were in the text and the actual historical author...

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