The Sccaffolds In The Scarlet Letter By Nathaniel Hawthorne

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According to Sarah Sheldon {Barron’s Book Study Notes}, when speaking about the romantic novel written by Nathaniel Hawthorne , The Scarlet Letter, some critics believe that the heart of the novels structure is the scaffold. This is spot on especially in case of the character development of one Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale. The initial point that is crucial to make is the irony that is the scaffold or the “heart” of the novel. Generally speaking, ones heart is the place where one can be alone with ones soul, the safe keeping place of all ones emotions, memories, deep thoughts and secrets. When comparing this to the scaffold, one sees that the scaffold is the place where secrets are revealed and sin is advertised for all to see. It is a place of judgement and condemnation. Quite the opposite of a heart in the general sense. But yet, these two are placed on common ground. The gallows is where the story begins and ends, starting with Reverend Dimmesdale “candidly” denying his sin by asking Hester to reveal the identity of the father of her young infant and her partner in sin, so that he m...

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