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"The Scarlet Letter" By Nathaniel Hawthorne: Pearl As A Symbolic Device To Work On The Consciences Of Hester And Dimmesdale

571 words - 2 pages

Pearl as a Symbolic Device to Work on the Consciences of Hester and DimmesdaleIn Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Pearl Prynne is the living manifestation of the scarlet letter. She is the visible tie between Hester and Dimmesdale. The beautiful estranged daughter of the town adulteress, Pearl has demon-like traits. She is a very strange child, yet she is the one who leads both Hester and Dimmesdale to the acceptance of their sin and Dimmesdale to his confession in the end of the novel.Initially, Pearl is the living punishment for Hester's sin. She is Hester's torture, as well as her treasure. Pearl is definitely a blunt little girl, speaking anything and everything on her mind. She constantly harasses her mother about the scarlet letter. When Hester took off the letter and let her hair down in the forest, Pearl had a fit. She did not want her mother to take the scarlet letter off for the wrong reasons. Pearl also did not want Hester to run away from her problems by sailing to Europe. She wanted Hester to face up to her sin and accept it.Pearl is very harsh towards her mother at times, always teasing her about the scarlet letter, such as the forest scene. The sun was shining in a certain part of the woods and Pearl ran to get in the light. Hester reached out her hand to the sunshine, but it moved away to a different spot in the forest. Pearl taunted Hester, saying, "Mother, the sunshine does not love you. It runs away and hides itself, because it is afraid of something on your bosom." (166) Even though Pearl does seem mean...

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