Theme of Mistake in Dr Heidegger’s Experiment by Nathaniel Hawthorne


The Plot

This is a short story about the crave for youthfulness. Most if not all the major characters in the story embraced the wish or opportunity of becoming youth again as seen in the plot of the story.

[There is a slideshow of Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment at prezi.com]


The Themes

Besides other themes such as death, supernatural, morality; the theme of past mistakes will be butchered here.

[Must Read: 5 Analyzed Poems About Youthfulness]

Past mistakes were the drive of the three aged friends of Dr. Heidegger who witnessed the revival of the withered rose once dropped in the magical water brought from the Fountain of Youth. They all needed second chance; Gascoigne needed to correct the damage corruption cost him, Medbourn needed to correct the damage gambling cost him, Killigrew needed to correct his immortal ways and Dr. Heidegger who probably kept the rose as a reminder of losing the love of his life (Sylvia Ward).


The article on litchart also noted that “Dr. Heidegger’s (the main character) four friends are all characters whose reputations were tarnished in some way by mistakes they made in their youth. He chooses them as subjects because he wishes to see whether they will learn from their mistakes when given a second chance to be young.”



The Author

The author of Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment, [Order His Book: Twice-Told Tales] Nathaniel Hawthorne, was an American short story writer who lived between the year 1804 and 1864. His departure from this mortar earth was recorded to occur in Hampshire, United States.
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