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Mosses From an Old Manse
Mosses From an Old Manse (courtesy of Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA)
  • "'Feathertop': Smoke and Mirrors" by David Donavel, Chair, Department of English, Masconomet Regional High School, Topsfield, MA
    In this essay David Donavel examines the symbol of the mirror in Hawthorne's work, focussing particularly on its use in "Feathertop." Donavel asserts that "[t]he looking glass or mirror provides, it appears, a way for Hawthorne to articulate a sense of something like a 'parallel reality' in which truths are revealed that are otherwise hidden. This 'through the looking glass world' is closely allied to the created or imagined reality of romance, a reality that distorts our everyday sunlit experience in order to show us significance otherwise unavailable."

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