Questions for Discussion
- People often go through five stages when they must deal with loss or change. Can you find an example of each one in the story as people try to understand the change in Mr. Hooper?
- What incidents start rumors about Mr. Hooper's reason for wearing the veil?
- Why does Elizabeth break her engagement to Mr. Hooper?
- As time passes, how do people respond to Mr. Hooper and his veil? Consider these:
Why do you think people respond in these ways?
- "the gentle and timid"
- the impertinent
- dying sinners
- Mr. Hooper himself
- Hawthorne is careful to describe Rev. Clark of Westbury as "young and zealous." What difference does Rev. Clark's age make? How might a minister closer to Mr. Hooper's age have handled the situation?
- Mr. Hooper never removes the veil, not even as he is dying. What passages in the story help the reader understand his decision?
"The Minister's Black Veil" 1