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Cosequences Of Shame And Guilt Essay

880 words - 4 pages

Guilt and shame can tear a person's soul away. The inevitable consequence of sin is the immediate reaction of guilt, shame, and remorse. In each of the two works, The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, there are characters who have committed a sin and feel guilty about it. For example: John Proctor, Elizabeth Proctor, and Reverend Dimmesdale have all committed a sin or sins and are feeling extremely guilty and remorseful about it. They are wanting to be forgiven, but they have no strength and are cowards. Forgiveness can be obtained if these characters find the strength within themselves to speak the truth.The first to commit a sin is John Proctor, the husband of Elizabeth Proctor. John is a good man until Abigail Williams comes into his life. John lives in a house feeling empty and thinking his wife does not love him. Lust is a very powerful feeling and it tempts John right into bed with Abigail. He commits adultery and Elizabeth does not forgive him. She finds ways to punish John and make him feel more remorseful. For example, Reverend Hale asks John to recite the commandments and he forgets one, Elizabeth then says sarcastically, "Adultery, John" (Miller 1211). Elizabeth responds in such a manner that John feels such pain in his heart. At one point John is fed up with her heartless manner and says, "Spare me! You forget nothin' and forgive nothin'....I have gone tip toe in this house all seven month from there to there without I think to please you, and still an everlasting funeral marches round your heart" (Miller 1203). John is fed up with her convictions. With this his mind, Elizabeth herself has convictions of her own. Indeed, Elizabeth feels guilty as well. She tells John, "I have sins of my own to count. It needs a cold wife to prompt lechery" (Miller 1252). Elizabeth feels as though she is to blame for John committing adultery. She is a mother and ,of course, Elizabeth will be consumed with taking care of their children, cooking, cleaning, etc. At first, Elizabeth does not realize John pulling away from her and turning towards Abigail. Soon after Elizabeth finds out John committed adultery with Abby, she fires her. Later on in the novel Elizabeth is accused of being a...

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