Hope in Literature

(Feel free to click on any of the links –red words– to get information/watch video)

Hope is an immense topic encompassing volumes and volumes of worlds.

It is no wonder that such a sought after, contemplated ideal, has such a hold and popularity in poetry. Famous poets such as Emily Dickinson and Emily Brontë wrote poems titled ‘Hope’, each expressing their own attitudes and opinions about the vast and sometimes controversial topic.

Poem by Emily Dickinson (click here for link):

Poem by Emily Brontë (click here for link)


Most stories involve a plotline sans hope. This hopelessness is what gives the novel the gravity to affect its audience. As the audience is immersed in a story that seems hopeless, they themselves hope that the tide will turn for the characters. Edgar Allan Poe is an author renowned for his ‘mystery/horror’ novels and short stories. Poe’s short story The Masque of the Red Death is one such story revealing the hopelessness of mankind. The story allows the reader to contemplate his or her current situation (ie: his or her life) and analyze their wants and desires as well as the grave inevitabilities of the world, namely Death.

However, hope does find its way into literature without help from the audience. Nathaniel Hawthorne introduces hope into his story The House of the Seven Gables. The main character Phoebe Pyncheon represents Hope. Phoebe is the only hope, the last straw, for the two crumbling families, the Pyncheons and the Maules. Phoebe is the youth, brightness, and innocence that reunites the Maules and Pyncheons with the aid of Holgrave. She recognizes the sadness and despair of the past and strives to change the future for the better.

Other texts encompass the strictly hope assuring lens such as The Secret by Rhonda Byrne and Your Invisible Power by Genevieve Behrend. These works reassure the reader that the world is good; that there is happiness, and that they, the audience, can achieve anything singlehandedly.

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1 Comment

  1. The analysis is very good on the short stories. Why not devote a post to Dickinson’s hope is a thing with feathers. Focus on one poem….is her image correct?


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