The Scarlet Letter 10 Essay

1284 words - 5 pages

"Among many morals which press upon us from the poor minister's miserable experience, we put only this into a sentence: Be true! Be true! Be true! Show freely to the world, if not your worst, yet some trait whereby the worst may be inferred!"(Ch.24: 236) Hawthorne expresses the purpose of writing this novel in that short sentence. He creates characters who have sin and disguise these sins for their own salvation. Slowly these sins evolve the characters, it strengthens Hester, humanizes Dimmesdale, and turns Chillingworth into a demon. The story is Hawthorne's depiction of the effects of sin on the hearts and minds of humanity during the Puritan society through the characters Hester, Dimmesdale, and Chillingworth.Hester's sin is that her passion and love were of more importance to her than the Puritan moral code, but she learns the error of her ways and slowly regains the adoration of the community. For instance, "What we did had a consecration of its own. We felt it so! We said so to each other! Hast thou forgotten it?"(Ch.17: 179). Hester fully acknowledges her guilt and displays it with pride to the world. This was obvious by the way she displays the scarlet letter with elaborate designs showing that she is proud. Furthermore, she does not want to live a life of lies anymore when she states "forgive me! In all things else, I have striven to be true! Truth was the one virtue which I might have held fast, and did hold fast, through all extremity save when thy good--the life--they fame--were put in question! Then I consented a deception. But a lie is never good, even though death threaten the other side!"(Ch.17: 177). Hester learns from her sin, and grows strong, a direct result from her punishment. The scarlet letter 'A' was as if a blessing to Hester changing her into an honest person with good virtues. Fittingly, she chooses to stay in Boston with Pearl although Hawthorne admits, "…that this woman should still call that place her home, where, and where only, she must needs be the type of shame"(Ch.5: 73). She is trying to stay and face her consequences instead of running in the other direction. Most people would leave a town where they are looked upon as trash the scum of society. Finally, the colonists come to think of the scarlet letter as "…the cross on a nun's bosom"(Ch.13: 149). She proves her worth with her uncommon sewing skills and providing community service. They view Hester as less of an outcast and more of her being part of the community now. The scarlet letter was her passport into regions where other women dared not tread: Shame, Despair, and Solitude! these had been her teachers, --stern and wild ones, --and they had made her strong.Arthur Dimmesdale's was Hester's silent partner in crime that confesses nothing in order to save himself. First, Dimmesdale pleads with Hester, while she receives her sentence on the scaffold, to confess the father of the her child,"…I charge thee to speak out the name of thy...

Find Another Essay On The scarlet letter 10

The Scarlet Letter Essay

1679 words - 7 pages As Elbert Hubbard said “We are not punished for our sins, but by them.” In the eyes of Puritans, submitting to decadence is known to be heretical and should be dealt with great punishment. As shown in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel, The Scarlet Letter, punishment for committing adultery, one of the most horrendous sins, is to wear the letter “A”, which stands for adultery. Hester Prynne, the bearer of this brand, is forced to wear this letter for

the scarlet letter Essay

1109 words - 4 pages Kinyara Austin10/10/143rd blockRough draftThe seventeenth century novel, the Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne begins with Hester Prynne, a woman living in colonial Boston. She is charged with adultery and her punishment is to permanently wear a visible token of her sin. The symbol, a scarlet letter "A", leads to public humiliation everywhere she travels. Throughout the novel, the narrator introduces Dimmesdale, the holy man who she has an

The Scarlet Letter

1259 words - 5 pages Letter, by NathanielHawthorne, and The Crucible, by Arthur Miller. The Scarlet Letter displays a society that treats two people verydifferently who commit the sin of adultery together. The woman, Hester Prynne, admits her sin, is forced to alwayswear a scarlet letter A on her bosom, and is ostracized from society. The man, Reverend Dimmesdale, hides his sinfrom the world, is almost worshipped by the townspeople, but is filled with the shame of his

The Scarlet Letter

1524 words - 6 pages The trouble that one letter can cause to so many people can be described as nothing short of incredible. The power of the scarlet letter can change a life, a community, and be a harder punishment than people will ever understand. In the novel The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne gives the scarlet letter three significant meanings that are revealed through different scenes within the novel. The Scarlet letter was pushed upon Hester Prynne by

The Scarlet Letter

884 words - 4 pages The Scarlet Letter has been a dominant piece of literature in America for 400 years. The book is about a single parent, Hester Prynne, who is being publically shamed for committing adultery while her husband was at sea. Throughout the book, Hester tries to keep the identity of her daughter’s father secret, while living with the shame of wearing a scarlet letter “A” on her bosom. The perception of Hester Prynne, from the characters, narrator, and

The Scarlet Letter - 1061 words

1061 words - 4 pages The Scarlet LetterMany great works of literature are filled with material symbols that are meant to represent other deeper more meaningful things, none more so than the letter "A" in Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter". In this book, Hawthorne provides us with an intricate plot that takes the scarlet letter through a rollercoaster of ups and downs, spanning the spectrum of positive and negative connotation throughout the course of the

The Scarlet Letter

1584 words - 6 pages Nathaniel Hawthorne"s, The Scarlet Letter is a book about a woman, Hester, who moves to Boston from England during the Puritan times. She has a husband, and tells the colonists of Boston he will be arriving to be with her soon. After years go by and he doesn"t arrive, Hester finds another man whom she becomes close to. She becomes pregnant and the town finds out she has committed adultery. She is forced to wear a letter "A,&quot

The Scarlet Letter

1015 words - 4 pages The Scarlet Letter A Critical Analysis of Hester Prynne The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne was written in 1849. This novel won him much fame and a good reputation as a writer. In writing The Scarlet Letter, Hawethorne was creating a form of fiction he called the psychological romance. A psychological romance is a story that contains all of the conventional trappings of a typical romance, but deeply portrays humans in conflict

The Scarlet Letter Essay

1521 words - 7 pages Adulteress, banished, condemned…words that flash across the minds of Boston citizens when viewing the scarlet letter ‘A’ that is afixed to Hester Prynne in the 17th century of Nathaniel Hawtorne’s novel. Is it a symbol worthy of scorn and judgment? In their hypocritical eyes, there is no doubt about that. A fallen woman deserves that shame she brings upon herself. Symbolism is a common literary element that is found repeatedly in The Scarlet

The Scarlet Letter - 940 words

940 words - 4 pages Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel, The Scarlet Letter, narrates the life of a young woman, Hester Prynne, who had an affair with the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale and was forced to live with the constant torture of Puritan society. Because of this affair that Hester and Dimmesdale underwent, Hester bore a child, Pearl, whom she begot out of wedlock with Dimmesdale. Although Puritan society in the seventeenth century could be brutal with its strict

The Scarlet Letter

1515 words - 7 pages The Scarlet Letter After the “discovery” of America by Christopher Columbus, people flocked to America in search of a new life. One of these groups was the Puritans, who fled England as a result of persecution by the crown. The Puritans were known for their extreme devotion to religion, and their goal to have their community to be as a “city upon a hill”. This idea of a city upon a hill shows how they want everyone to look up to them, but

Similar Essays

The Scarlet Letter Essay

1217 words - 5 pages her.The scarlet letter changes throughout t the entire novel. The letter starts out as being a punishment for the adulterous crime she had committed. "In the opening chapters the scarlet "A" is the object of hundreds of eyes [...]."(Feidelson 10) In other words the scarlet letter is marking her. Everyone looks at her with scorn, because of her sin. Later on in the novel the meaning changes, "Some additional meanings read through the letter include

The Scarlet Letter Essay 2406 Words

2406 words - 10 pages Letter, a Romance." The North American Review 71.148 (July 1850): 135-148. Rpt. in Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism. Ed. Laurie Lanzen Harris. Vol. 10. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 21 Feb. 2012. Derrick, Scott S. "'A Curious Subject of Observation and Inquiry': Homoeroticism, the Body, and Authorship in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter." Novel 28.3 (Spring 1995): 308-326. Rpt. in Nineteenth-Century

The Scarlet Letter Essay

1257 words - 6 pages Hester Prynne has committed a crime that is hard to Discussdiscuss. She has started a huge scandal in the small community of from which she comes from. She committed the crime of adultery. She was tried and sentenced to wear the scarlet letter “A” Which which stands for adultery. She is forced to be publicly shamed for what she has done. The scarlet letter “A” is aan important symbol in this story . It symbolizes a different thing something

The Scarlet Letter Essay 593 Words

593 words - 2 pages The Scarlet Letter "The Scarlet Letter", a fictional novel, is written by Nathaniel Hawthorne and was published in 1849. The story took place in New England in the seventeenth century. This was a time when a community exercised control over the moral behavior of its members. Those who broke the community's moral code were publicly humiliated by being placed on the scaffold. The story is structured around four characters: Hester, Pearl