Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Rappaccini's Daughter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

To start off my reaction paper, if there was anything intriguing right from the beginning I would have to say it was the title. Before even diving right into the story, I enjoyed the spare time to think of what the plot would be all about. My wild guess was not even close to the real plot but it was this. The title 'Rappaccini's Daughter' sounded to me that Rappaccini values his daughter very much. Although I had a feeling of fear because it seemed that Rappaccini owns his daughter as a property for his own amusement thus the daughter became very valuable to him.

After reading the story, I have come up with the idea that Rappaccini was not entirely evil in a sense that he was still sensitive about his daughter's well-being because for one, he was able to provide her a partner who she will be able to connect with named Giovanni. Rappaccini did not abandon his daughter but created someone like her as her own mate - someone who can withstand her poison wanting and making his daughter, Beatrice, happy.


With regards to moral issue in this story that would have been one. However, Rappaccini was wrong here for playing the role of God as if he has the choice to create and alter the nature to something out of his spiritual love for science and experimentation. Linking back to Beatrice's life, she was not able to make decisions for herself as I assumed from the start that her life belonged to her creator (her father) that made her unreachable and trapped together in their own artificial garden. Beatrice did not have choice when all she had ever wanted was to be loved and not feared by others. I think that was selfish of Rappaccini and to blame her when she refuses to go along with his schemes.

As for the role of Giovanni in the story, I would have to say that he was either just curious or infatuated with Beatrice. He was drawn curious about the things that Rappaccini may be up to and was merely infatuated because it was evident in the story clearly stated "quick fancy". Furthermore I felt Giovanni may have felt betrayed by both Beatrice and her father because of their scheme to lure him into their lives right from the beginning. To summarize the story carries an important theme concerning the power of women by the virtue of her and ability to destroy and furthers the theme of nature versus science, the arising problem of science and technology in modern technology.

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