Theme Of Pearl In The Scarlet Letter

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In the novel The Scarlet Letter, Nathanial Hawthorne expresses his theme, guilt and blame through the characterization and symbolism of Pearl and the scarlet letter. As we know, following Hester's act of adultery, she became pregnant with Pearl and we get the sense that there is something strange and unnatural about her when first introduced. This is relevant to her symbolism and the many attributes that she represents. Throughout the novel, her symbolism involves innocence, sin, and evil. Furthermore, it is also possible that her name in itself is used to symbolize different elements like a pearl; a treasure much like Pearl becomes for Hester (Hawthorne 41). In many ways, it seems that Pearl is the scarlet letter personified. She represented…show more content…
Pearl was often treated with hostility for no reason. Her only "crime" was her existence. The children in The Scarlet Letter were cruel out of learned behavior. They knew the significance of the scarlet letter, but did not fully understand it. The children observed that the adults treated Hester with hostility and with to imitate the adults they harassed and teased Pearl. Pearl being bullied further emphasizes her innocence and how she is a victim because of it. Also, Pearl has a strange attachment to the scarlet letter. When she was a baby, she would reach for her mother's breast and try to grab the letter. She seems to by natural instinct realize that it has great significance, but when she confronts Hester about it she lies to her, telling Pearl that she wears it because of its beautiful gold thread (Hawthorne 115). Besides being the symbol of innocence, her name also represents a treasure and great…show more content…
Hawthorne gives the audience a chance to consider their own opinion on what Pearl really stands for. His ambiguity shows the true complexity to Pearl and each of her symbolic meanings. This is clear in all of the symbolic meanings Pearl had. In the novel, Pearl is an excellent example of childish innocence and treasure, evil and sin, and morality. Her will power and imagination make her a blessing and a curse to her mother, who has paid such a great price for her child. Hawthorne's ambiguity shows the true complexity of Pearl and each of her symbolic meanings that were covered and arrange it all quite brilliantly because Hawthorne incorporated the aftermaths of Hester and Dimmesdale's sins into one innocent character,
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