Examples Of Pathos In The Scarlet Letter

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Hawthorne uses many forms of rhetoric to portray his characters, but relies heavily on pathos in the instance of Hester Prynne. She’s a member of an inherently misogynistic society, and because she’s a woman, her every act is scrutinized. As punishment for her act of adultery, Hester is ordered to adorn her chest with a permanent scarlet letter. Although the audience is well aware of the atrocity of the sin she’s committed, Hawthorne’s writing sparks a feeling of empathy within the reader. Throughout the novel, the reader is exposed to several clear uses of pathos. The scene detailing Hester and Pearl’s time in the Governor's house is just one of Hawthorne’s many appeals to emotion. After entering the home, Pearl notices a polished suit of armor, and calls Hester over to see it. …show more content…

“The scarlet letter was represented in exaggerated and gigantic proportions, so as to be greatly the most prominent feature of her appearance. In truth, she seemed absolutely hidden behind it.” (120) Hawthorne’s description of the distorted scarlet letter illustrates the townspeople’s prejudiced view of

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