The Scarlet Letter “The Scarlet Letter”, written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, records a struggled life about two adultery lovers. This story was marked by the most successful work back in 1850s and also become to a big part of Hawthorne’s writing career. Through the eyes of his main character Hester Prynne, the readers seem to see a woman’s helpless under a brutal and traditional society, which was ruled by Puritan people. After his book had been published one after another, no one can deny Hawthorne’s irreplaceable talent and unremitting effort. Nathaniel Hawthorne expressed his own feelings about the dark Puritan society through many successful works, which helped him become more and more popular after he died in 1864.
Cursed with the permanent mark of adultery upon her bosom, Hester Prynne, the main character in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s book, The Scarlet Letter, faces many hardships and disgrace. Referencing these hardships, Hawthorne portrays the scarlet letter as the forbidden mark of adultery. Upon first meeting Hester, the scarlet letter is a symbol for adultery and disgrace. As the story progresses, the scarlet letter evolves into a symbol of wisdom and identity. Hawthorne utilizes each different meaning of the scarlet letter to make a commentary on the Puritan society.
Sin: Destroyer and Saver of the Soul Universally, sin is known to devour one’s soul. This theme is actively portrayed throughout the novel, The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne. However, he also focuses on how sin can occasionally save a person, but how secret sin is destructive; secret sin being sins that are committed, but not shown. This secret sin is known only to the person who committed the sin which in many cases is more damaging. Through the characters of Hester Prynne, Arthur Dimmesdale, and Roger Chillingworth, themes of both sin and secret sin are actively portrayed.
Have you ever met someone so creepy, yet so fascinating, that you just wanted to get to know him more? Edgar Allan Poe wrote many stories and poems that usually ended sadly. He drank excessively, was known as a dark man, and tended to write stories of horror. Poe is one of the greatest authors in all of history because of his love for gothic themes, his passion for romance, his influence on detective stories, and his interesting characteristics. To begin with, Poe was a great author of his time period because of his passion for romance.
Hester's struggle against society is similar to his own. Both, he and Hester, resist Puritan values and beliefs. The society Hawthorne lived in discouraged him and stopped him from pursuing his passion in writing, but he still continues to write. His novel shows the inner conflicts of individuals, the conflicts between them and society, and discloses the truth of the human heart. The story discusses a sin, which is adultery, and how viewing it differs from society and the sinner.
Choices that are made because of passion set the course of The Scarlet Letter, from Hester and Dimmesdale’s adultery to Chillingworth’s fierce hatred. The character’s emotions are the fire that fuels the plot of this novel, and without them there would be no story. The consequences each character must bear as a result of their emotions are also an essential part of the plot; they are their physical and emotional scars. The metaphor of fire as passion can be found in countless places in literature, but Hawthorne expands on the comparison to include every aspect of fire and an enormous range of human emotions. Although they may be consumed with love or hatred, joy or rage, the flame of passion shines through all the main characters of The Scarlet Letter.
Most readers overlook his admirable qualities and view him as hypocritical and weak. “For, Hester, his spirit lacked the strength that could have borne up, as thine has, beneath a burden like thy scarlet letter” (Hawthorne 188). Chillingworth is telling Hester that Dimmesdale lectures people about the repercussions of sins, however he cannot handle his own. “He is generally called a hypocrite, but though the life he lives is a lie, he is never quite that. Pride and fear combine to keep him from making a clean breast of things, and the best in him conspires with the worst to keep him silent” (Wagenknecht 67).
Although he tried to live a double life of being a pastor and a man who is trying to keep his greatest sin a secret. He cannot come to terms to confessing his sin even if his guilt i... ... middle of paper ... ...ter.” (149). While Hester had to receive the penance of her actions and conquer it, Dimmesdale was still in hiding like the coward he presented himself as. He views Hester as the one that got the better end of the situation by saying “Happy are you, Hester, that wear the scarlet letter openly upon your bosom! Mine burns in secret!” (167) Dimmesdale envies Hester’s letter because she has no need to hide form anyone and live in secret.
This proved to be much less harsh then the internal punishment that Dimmesdale faced. Dimmesdale's method of repentance is much worse than Hester's both emotionally and physically. Dimmesdale whips and beats himself as a form of repentance. Also, he stays up way into the night standing on the scaffold as he struggles to gain the nerve to admit his sin. It also hurts Dimmesdale when the townspeople speak of how righteous and holy he is.
The first element for which the critics have praised Johnson is his powerful satire. Johnson's best example of this is displayed in his work The Vanity of Human Wishes. In this highly regarded poem, Johnson intertwines moral elegance and majestic verse in this satirical masterpiece. The Vanity of Human Wishes is hailed as one of Johnson's greatest literary accomplishments. This wonderful work illustrates, according to Albert Perry Walker in his book Life of Johnson, "The futility of man's ambitious struggles for happiness..."1 Samuel Johnson had a keen sense of his surroundings, as he was a common figure in English society.