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Character Analysis Of Hester Prynne

736 words - 3 pages

Committing adultery in today's society is frowned upon, but otherwise basically ignored. Many believe the morals of mankind have decreased over the ages, though it's an argument whether or not it was for better or worse. For a young woman living in a Puritan society freshly rooted in a new world, morals were as strict as imaginable. Committing adultery was something one would not even think about doing. But it was done. In a drama that could easily be turned into an episode of DAYS OF OUR LIVES, Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter" dives into the life of Hester Prynne. Through twisted coincidences, the reader watches as one of the most confusing, heart wrenching, and life-changing events takes over Hester's life and changes her permanently; though it can be argued whether or not for the best. Throughout the sequence of the story, the actions of Hester Prynne, Roger Chillingworth, and Arthur Dimmesdale are brought to life. Through these actions, Pearl is brought to life as well. A child born out of wedlock, Pearl herself acts as a scarlet letter, forever branding her own mother. Hester takes on the full brute responsibility of raising the child and facing her menacing peers while upholding the secrecy of the father's identity as closely as possible. Many different sides of Hester are shown throughout the story, beginning with her brave but guilty defiance against those that punish her so cruelly. Portrayed as a scandalous woman with no moral values, Hester holds her own as well as possible through repeated bashings from the townspeople. Her loyalty to Dimmesdale alone shows how strong of a woman she is, knowing that he would be ruined if ever it were found out. Threatened and expelled by her former husband Chillingworth, Hester is left to fend for herself completely, while sworn to secrecy on Chillingworth's behalf as well. As the years pass, Hester carries the many burdens placed upon her sufficiently, while at the same time always showing a considerate side to those in need of assistance....

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