S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) English Language and Literature (영어영문학과) 영학논집(English Studies) 영학논집(English Studies) No.04 (1980)
Problem of Reality in "Young Goodman Brown" and "The Real Thing"
- Ryu, MyungSook
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 인문대학 영어영문학과
- 영학논집 4(1980): 81-92
- Ever.since Pilate's taunting question ("What is Truth?") to Jesus,
the problem of reality has been the centre of philosophical speculation.
It has also led to various isms-conceptual realism of Plato, PlatonicAristotelian
kind of realism, nominalism, empirico-idealism, subjective
and objective realism, to mention a few-which turned this kind of
inquiry into a tautology, if not foolish pedantries. Moreovervthe critics'
perplexity over the literaty term "realism" added much to' the misconception
and obscurity of the word "reality." So I am not going to
define "realism," as many critics have tried, to little purpose. I would
rather point out the crucial part reality plays in American literature
by analyzing two short stories.
Before we go on, it will be necessary to ascertain what I mean by
the word "reality." Many critics agree on the complexity and multiplicity
of its meanings; "it is a word which can, in the same context,
have a multiplicity of meanings." Since reality changes: perpetually
according to human consciousness, it has no chance of stable meaning.