Selected Stories

Overview

Dark, weird, psychologically complex, Hawthorne?s short fiction continues to fascinate readers. Brenda Wineapple has made a generous selection of Hawthorne?s stories, including some of his best-known tales as well as other, less-often anthologized gems. In her introduction, she explores a writer whose best stories, as Wineapple has elsewhere observed, ?penetrate the secret horrors of ordinary life, those interstices in the general routine where suddenly something or someone ...

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Overview

Dark, weird, psychologically complex, Hawthorne’s short fiction continues to fascinate readers. Brenda Wineapple has made a generous selection of Hawthorne’s stories, including some of his best-known tales as well as other, less-often anthologized gems. In her introduction, she explores a writer whose best stories, as Wineapple has elsewhere observed, “penetrate the secret horrors of ordinary life, those interstices in the general routine where suddenly something or someone shifts out of place, changing everything.”

The John Harvard Library edition reproduces the authoritative texts of Hawthorne’s stories in The Centenary Edition of the Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674050228
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 6/1/2011
  • Series: John Harvard Library Series , #117
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 1,398,543
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Brenda Wineapple is Director of the Leon Levy Center for Biography at the Graduate School, CUNY, and teaches in the MFA programs at the New School and Columbia University. Her books include White Heat: The Friendship of Emily Dickinson and Thomas Wentworth Higginson and Hawthorne: A Life.

Biography

Nathaniel Hathorne, Jr., was born into an established New England puritan family on Independence Day, 1804, in Salem, Massachusetts. After the sudden death of his father, he and his mother and sisters moved in with his mother's family in Salem. Nathaniel's early education was informal; he was home-schooled by tutors until he enrolled in Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine.

Uninterested in conventional professions such as law, medicine, or the ministry, Nathaniel chose instead to rely "for support upon my pen." After graduation, he returned to his hometown, wrote short stories and sketches, and chanced the spelling of his surname to "Hawthorne." Hawthorne's coterie consisted of transcendentalist thinkers, including Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. Although he did not subscribe entirely to the group's philosophy, he lived for six months at Brook Farm, a cooperative living community the transcendentalists established in West Roxbury, Massachusetts.

On July 9, 1942, Hawthorne married a follower of Emerson, Sophia Peabody, with whom he had a daughter, Una, and a son, Julian. The couple purchased a mansion in Concord, Massachusetts, that previously had been occupied by author Louisa May Alcott. Frequently in financial difficulty, Hawthorne worked at the custom houses in Salem and Boston to support his family and his writing. His peaceful life was interrupted when his college friend, Franklin Pierce, now president of the United States, appointed him U.S. consul at Liverpool, England, where he served for four years.

The publication of The Scarlet Letter in 1850 changed the way society viewed Puritanism. Considered his masterpiece, the novel focuses on Hawthorne's recurrent themes of sin, guilt, and punishment. Some critics have attributed his sense of guilt to his ancestors' connection with the persecution of Quakers in seventeenth-century New England and their prominent role in the Salem witchcraft trials in the 1690s.

On May 19, 1864, Hawthorne died in Plymouth, New Hampshire, leaving behind several unfinished novels that were published posthumously. He is buried at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Concord, Massachusetts.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of The Scarlet Letter.

Good To Know

Hawthorne's birth name was actually Nathaniel Hathorne. It's rumored that he added a "w" to avoid being associated with his Puritan grandfather, Judge Hathorne -- who presided over the Salem Witch Trials.

Among Hawthorne's peers at Maine's Bowdoin College: author Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Franklin Pierce, who would later become the country's 14th president.

In its first week of publication, The Scarlet Letter sold 4,000 copies.

Hawthorne died on May 19, 1864, at the Pemigewasset House in Plymouth, New Hampshire. Ironically, former president Franklin Pierce had advised him to go there for his health.

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    1. Date of Birth:
      July 4, 1804
    2. Place of Birth:
      Salem, Massachusetts
    1. Date of Death:
      May 19, 1864
    2. Place of Death:
      Plymouth, New Hampshire
    1. Education:
      Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine, 1824

Table of Contents

Introduction Brenda Wineapple vii

Note on the Text xxiii

Chronology of Nathaniel Hawthorne's Life xxv

Selected Stories

The Hollow of the Three Hills 1

My Kinsman, Major Molineux 7

Roger Malvin's Burial 30

The Haunted Mind 54

Young Goodman Brown 60

Wakefield 76

The Ambitious Guest 87

The Devil in Manuscript 97

The Minister's Black Veil 106

Night Sketches 122

Old Esther Dudley 129

A Virtuoso's Collection 142

The Birth-mark 162

Egotism or the Bosom-Serpent 182

Earth's Holocaust 198

The Artist of the Beautiful 221

Rappaccini's Daughter 249

The Old Manse 285

Ethan Brand 316

Selected Bibliography 337

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