This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Scarlet Letter Theme Essay

794 words - 3 pages

In Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel, The Scarlett Letter Hester Prynne faces myriad obstacles due to harsh Puritan punishment which helped craft her into a stronger woman. She was given a scarlet letter from the community to alienate her from the rest society. The society built by the Puritans, in settling the New World, was stern and repressive, no place for a vibrant, healthy woman with a self esteem that could not be destroyed by a constant public humiliation. Hester is forced to wear the scarlet letter "A" which initially stood for adulteress. In Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel Hester Prynne grows from a victim of Puritan punishment to a strong, decisive woman who is eventually admired by the community.Hester Prynne makes a magnificent transformation throughout the novel. Her transformation begins at the start of the novel when Hester comes to the New World and into the Puritan society. She first comes out of the jail due to the crime she has committed of adultery where she bearing her love child, Pearl and wearing a scarlet "A" on her chest to keep as a reminder of her sin. Many of the townspeople in the community talked about her every time they saw her because they all knew of her crime. For example, one person said "…the Reverend Master Dimmesdale, her godly pastor, takes it very grievously to hear that such a scandal should have come upon his congregation" (Hawthorne 47). The "A" Hester wore on her chest made sure that she would be one who was alienated from the rest of society. Hester paid no mind to these people seeing as she was able to overcome the primary meaning of her "A". Hester's scarlet "A" meaning soon changed from adulteress to able. She was able to support her daughter Pearl because of her impressive needle work that she sold. At this point she was somewhat accepted by society. Hawthorne states that, "She possessed an art that sufficed, even in a land that afforded comparatively little scope for its exercise, to supply food for her thriving infant and herself" (Hawthorne 75). Hester's journey was a long one however; she was able to go from adulteress to able, and now to angel. Hester knew that she would not always be known as an adulterous and because of that she was able to become an angelic figure within society. During...

Find Another Essay On The Scarlet Letter Theme Essay

Theme of Individual Versus Society as it Pertains to Reverend Dimmesdale of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

676 words - 3 pages his on accord. If society was softer on Hester he wouldn't have been so consumed by his guilt.Dimmesdale's conflicts with himself fell through and he was only able to show what he needed to at his death. He needed the escape of life and the only way to set his soul free was to let his secret sin go. By letting go of his sin he let go of the earthly peril that kept him in his hellish life.Bibliography:Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. New York: Signet Classic, 1969.

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

1114 words - 5 pages inevitably oppresses those that are different. Puritan society revolves around the oppression of women, and how that oppression decides how their lives are lived. Hawthorne writes a novel that shows his audience how important rebelling against societal norms truly is, because people are able to see how Hester breaks away from those norms. Stereotypes, and how they function in the real world, compose the underlying theme of The Scarlet Letter

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 Essay

1288 words - 6 pages not!”(p. 78, paragraph 2) said one of the hypocritical old women. This was the judgment that poor Hester Prynne had to stand in front of… Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter is one of the most well-recognized books of all time. It has become standard reading material in English classes across the country, and it is not hard to see why. Most of the book is composed of different symbols, or concrete objects that represent something more than

The Scarlet Letter Essay - 1005 words

1005 words - 5 pages ) The reoccurring deteriorating scaffold Pearl Prynne, and the rosebush and ugly weeds are reoccurring symbols in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter.” Hawthorne’s characters symbolically transform the scaffold from beginning to end of the novel. Next the three scaffold scenes physically deteriorate with an underlying symbolic tone. Finally, the symbolic use of the scaffold throughout The Scarlet Letter leaves a lasting impression of its

The Scarlet Letter Essay - 1009 words

1009 words - 5 pages The symbol of the scaffold evolves in The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The Scarlet letter is build around the symbolic scaffold. The main characters transform the scaffold from the exposition to resolution. Next the traits of the scaffold itself deteriorate throughout the novel. Finally, the scaffold is applied symbolically throughout Hawthorne’s novel. The scaffold transforms throughout the book

The Scarlet Letter Essay - 1401 words

1401 words - 6 pages "In our nature, however, there is a provision, alike marvelous and merciful, that the sufferer should never know the intensity of what he endures by its present torture, but chiefly by the pang that rankles after it (84)." What is found evident in this quote concerning Hester Prynne, Hawthorne’s main protagonist, in The Scarlet Letter is that while she suffers so on the opening scaffold scene, it is but human nature to bless the individual with

The Scarlet Letter essay

1334 words - 6 pages Throughout history people have been shaped by the society in which they live. Those who accept the imposed rules and regulations tend to embody and reflect many of the characteristics of the society that guides them. However, those who do not conform and refuse the norms of society are often isolated from the contrasting group. Authors such as Nathaniel Hawthorne have explored this concept through literature. In his novel, The Scarlet Letter

The Scarlet Letter Essay - 1400 words

1400 words - 6 pages the door opens. In steps the bulk of the head prison guard. “Get up” he shouts, “Outside, let’s move.” Stepping outside in the first light seen in months the man covers his eyes because of the brightness. The guard gives a shove as he says, “Let’s move.” The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is filled with symbolic elements. Three very important symbols are the imposing scaffold, alternating letter ‘A’ and the characters themselves Hester

"The Scarlet Letter" Persuasive Essay

666 words - 3 pages In "The Scarlet Letter", Nathaniel Hawthorne portrays the hypocrisy of the Puritan society of the seventeenth century with the story of the downfall and redemption of Hester Prynne. The hypocritical Puritan society punishes Hester for committing adultery. However, in her own mind, she does not see her actions as a sin because she acts out of love. Furthermore, she redeems herself by turning her offense into a virtue. Through the tale of Hester

Similar Essays

Scarlet Letter Theme Essay

539 words - 2 pages The Scarlet Letter One of the most important themes in The Scarlet Letter is that a person must be true to himself and to those around him. Hawthorne state this theme directly in chapter 24 when he said, "Be true! Be true! Show freely to the world if not your worst than some trait whereby the worst may be inferred." The benefits of complying with this idea can be seen in Hester, while the pain caused by going against it can be seen in

"The Scarlet Letter" Thesis On The Theme Of Sin And Guilt

1775 words - 7 pages One main theme present in the work "The Scarlet Lette" is that of sin and guilt. Nathaniel Hawthorne attempts to show how guilt can be a form of everlasting punishment. The book represents sin and guilt through symbolism and character development. In his novel, "The Scarlet Letter", Nathaniel Hawthorne explains how the punishment of guilt causes the most suffering among those affected.As with any piece, symbolism plays an important role in

Theme Enhancement Through The Use Of Motif In The Scarlet Letter

601 words - 2 pages In The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne used many profound and important motifs. Some examples of this device that is portrayed in the novel are the letter 'A', which is the best example because it changes its meaning throughout the story. In the beginning, it is viewed as a symbol of sin, and throughout the novel changes its meaning.The letter is a label of punishment and sin in the commencement of the novel. It is a literal symbol of the

Excellent Work On The Scarlet Letter, With A Christian Based Theme. Term Paper, Very Long, Suitable For Thesis, Etc

3273 words - 13 pages Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter is one of the best examples of his work. He worked nine hours a day for six months to churn out this nice piece of literature, possibly one of America's greatest novels. The writing of this book marked a phase shift in Hawthorne's life. The end of the short-story phase and the real beginning (his first novel, Fanshaw was a failure) of the novel phase was an inevitable consequence spawned through The