Historicising Narrativity: Hawthorne’s The Marble Faun
Hawthorne’s novels and tales have been analyzed and discussed from a range of angles and perspectives.
Each of these interpretations represents a possible and valid way of reading his fiction and contributes to the bulk of criticism on Hawthorne.
They enrich our understanding of him and his works. But we cannot say about any of them that it is the one which possesses only possible explanation or definite interpretation of his works.
His novels and tales operate on various levels. In the present proposed reading, The Marble Faun (1860) has been selected to be read in the light of how history and socio-political thought of the times redefines a narrative, and of how the backdrop of socio-cultural events frames narrativity.
It is the circumstances in which the novel was written that
informs its thematic thrust.