Rappaccini’s Daughter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
A young man, named Giovanni Guasconti, came, very long ago, from the more southern region of Italy, to pursue his studies at the University of Padua.
–Nathaniel Hawthorne - Rappaccini's daughter (Mosses from an old manse)
Giovanni moves to a new city, and finds that his apartment overlooks an enclosed garden where beautiful flowers grow. And a beautiful woman tends to them. She is Beatrice, the daughter of Rappaccini. But a friend of his father, Baglioni, warns Giovanni away from Rappaccini. He values knowledge and science too much, he pursues it without thought for humanity or morality. His entire life is one of scientific obsession. Rumour has it that he has even experimented on his very own daughter.
But Giovanni is not to be put off, Baglioni fears that Rappaccini has begun to experiment upon him, he will find a way to meet Beatrice.I wasn’t too fond of the first story I had to read in this collection, this one, although written in a similar style was far more to my taste. There are plenty of themes in it that I might use for an essay. The “science is evil” aspect, which could relate to Frankenstein as well. The Rapunzal allusions. Garden of Eden. Women who lack agency. Women bringing about downfall of men. Loads of stuff, so thats a good thing for a person reading it with an essay to do
But for a regular reader? Well, still not really my cup of tea. The style is overly wordy for me to really enjoy and the characters aren’t really characters. They do what the plot requires, I’d prefer the reverse. Still, an improvement, lets see how the next one goes.