The Scarlet Letter is a well-known novel written by Nathaniel Hawthorne. In this novel Hawthorne wrote in depth about the Puritans’ reception to sin, in particular, adultery. He also includes brilliant visuals of the repercussions that occur when the town of Salem hears of Hester’s adultery. There are many relationships within the book, from a lover to a beautiful yet illegitimate daughter. Symbolism runs throughout, even a simple rose bush outside of a jail holds so much meaning. Hawthorne reveals themes all through the novel one in particular, was sin. Although sin does not occur often in the Puritan lifestyle Hawthorne shows the importance and change this one deceit makes for the town of Salem.
The relationships depicted in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter can be found in some of today’s most intriguing soap operas. At the beginning of The Scarlet Letter we are introduced to a young lady by the name of Hester Prynne. We are told that she has had a very complex relationship with an older man by the name of Rogers Chillingworth (Hawthorne). The basis of this relationship was told to be a marriage, but it is believed that Chillingworth paid more attention to his profession, medicine, instead of Hester (Weinauer). Chillingworth figured that the marriage would not last forever. This is proven when he says to Hester,
A man already in decay, having given my best years to feed the hungry dream of knowledge,—what had I to do with youth and beauty like thine own! Misshapen from my birth-hour, how could I delude myself with the idea that intellectual gifts might veil physical deformity in a young girl’s fantasy! … Nay, from the moment when we came down the old church-steps together, a married pair, I might have beheld the bale-...
... middle of paper ...
...y Literature Criticism. Ed. Laurie Lanzen Harris. Vol. 10. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985.Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 14 Jan. 2014.
Myerson, Joel. "Ticknor and Fields; Allen and Ticknor; William D. Ticknor; William D. Ticknor
and Company; Ticknor, Reed and Fields." American Literary Publishing Houses, 1638-1899. Ed. Peter Dzwonkoski. Detroit: Gale Research, 1986. Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 49. Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 14 Jan. 2014.
Oliphant, Margaret. "Modern Novelists-Great and Small." Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine 77
(May 1855): 554-568. Rpt. in Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism. Ed. Laurie Lanzen Harris. Vol. 10. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985.Literature Resources from Gale. Web. 14 Jan. 2014.
Weinauer, Ellen. "Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter." . Charles Scribner's Sons, 1 Jan.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, the guilt bestowed upon two passionate lovers committing adultery reveals the corrupt and over-radical beliefs of a strict Puritanical society. Hester Prynne and Arthur Dimmesdale face life-changing consequences after submitting to their emotions and committing sin. The narrator’s forgiving tone presents the society as being very strict in living by their social and religious codes. The administrative, or authoritarian, imagery conjured up by various scenarios with the scaffold, magistrates, and the mayor in hid castle supports the tense mood as Hester and Dimmesdale try to mysteriously elude the laws of their community.... [tags: Literary Analysis, Guilt, Puritanism]
766 words (2.2 pages)
- ... She finds a way to grow personally despite the restrictions society has placed on her. While Hester’s sin is the initial cause of her alienation, Puritanical beliefs perpetuate the void between Hester and community. The puritans believed man was incapable of any goodness without God. Sinners were rejected by both church and state, as Puritan colonies were founded on strict moral principles hoping to serve as a perfectly holy template for surrounding areas. David Sorrels comments that “Puritans were preoccupied with punishment and death”.... [tags: regulations, hester prynne]
1121 words (3.2 pages)
- The Nature of the Heart in The Scarlet Letter Sacrificing of the soul and dedication can lead to suffering for some, but meaning in life for others. This is the main theme of The Scarlet Letter,by Nathaniel Hawthorne. The story takes place in the seventeenth century in Puritan New England. The main character of the legend is Hester Prynne, who has an affair with Arthur Dimmesdale, the minister, and they produce Pearl. Hester's husband, Roger Chillingworth is the town physician. He is seen as the healer, collecting magical herbs to make medicine.... [tags: Scarlet Letter essays]
1343 words (3.8 pages)
- Talented writers often use extensive symbolism in there writing to portray intricate thoughts, ideas, and concepts. For example, in the popular 1978 movie Superman the “S” on Superman’s costume stands for super. Along the same lines, the “A” in Nathanial Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter is also a symbol. However, in contrast to the one dimensional meaning of the “S” in Superman, the “A” in The Scarlet Letter has a multifaceted meaning. As the literature unfolds the meaning of the crimson letter shining on Hester Prynne’s bosom subtlety changes from meaning adulterer, to able and finally the “A” becomes a symbol for angel.... [tags: Symbolism, Superman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet ]
937 words (2.7 pages)
- Symbolism can be found all throughout Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. While most of the symbolism in his work may subtle, it all plays a large role in his novel. Symbolism is often defined as something, like an object, that represents something else or an idea. One may even say he overuses symbolism in his work, “The Scarlet Letter”, but the meaning of his symbols change throughout the novel. For example, the letter “A” has one meaning in the beginning, but it changes a few times by the end novel.... [tags: The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
1549 words (4.4 pages)
- The Scarlet Letter As written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, “Be true. Be true. Be true!” (Hawthorne, 254). In a world full of corruption and deceit, the light of truth always finds a way to shine through, even in the darkest of places. It may be argued that forests and prisons, cloaked with gloomy ambience, are unlikely places to find this ray of honesty. However, in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, the author reinforces the rawness of truth and forgiveness, the destructiveness of secrets and revenge, and the evolving symbolism of light by the use of contrasting settings presented by the forest and prison.... [tags: The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
1855 words (5.3 pages)
- The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, tells the story of Hester Prynne, a strong-willed, young woman living in a Puritan village during the seventeenth-century. After she gives birth to an illegitimate child, Hester is forced to don the shameful scarlet letter “A” on her breast as a sign of her sin and to live as a warning to other young maidens. Roger Chillingworth, the aged husband of Hester, arrives in Boston in time to view his wife in “ignominious exposure” (Hawthorne 117). He decides to remain in the village under the guise of a doctor with the sole purpose of taking revenge on Hester’s unnamed lover.... [tags: The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
1151 words (3.3 pages)
- Nathaniel Hawthorne is a prominent writer who uses many different elements in his works. He uses elements such as symbolism, figurative language, metaphor, irony and etc. to make his work prominent. In the works by Nathaniel Hawthorne, he uses symbols for secret sin in The Scarlet Letter, “The Minister’s Black Veil,” and “Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment.” As seen in The Scarlet letter, the symbol for secret sin is the Scarlet letter “A.” The “A” represents the sin in which Hester commits adultery with the town’s minister, Dimmesdale.... [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Symbolism, ]
479 words (1.4 pages)
- Throughout the infamous novel by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the reader is met with a lot of symbolism, from the rosebush to the scaffold and of course the most obvious symbol of them all, the scarlet letter “A”. While the most evident meaning or symbolism behind the scarlet letter “A” is that it stands for adultery, the scarlet letter can actually represent a lot more depending on the context it is placed in. Throughout the novel, the scarlet letter “A” morphs in meaning. The letter goes from standing for adultery, to strength, growth, ableness, power and much more.... [tags: The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne]
752 words (2.1 pages)
- Symbolism in The Scarlet Letter Carl Jung believed that the source of symbols is universal. Symbols arise from the collective unconscious common to all humans everywhere. Joseph Campbell's research supports this theory; he traces universal archetypes through the stories, myths, and artwork of various cultures. While most work done with symbolism has focused on the universality of symbols, Nathaniel Hawthorn focuses on their personal, subjective meanings. A universal symbol arises from the symbol's relationship to reality; thus, such a symbol remains the same across cultures and with different individuals.... [tags: Scarlet Letter essays]
575 words (1.6 pages)