Their similarities are very evident, their differences however must be explored. Let's start with their stories. Hester of the scarlet letter, was condemned by her sin. She Lived in a small town with her husband. Hester however, cheated on her husband therefore committing adultery.
In the novel, The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne comes to explore an adulterous affair, and the resulting punishments inflicted by the Puritan society and the consequences for the central characters. The sin and punishment surrounding this forbidden love emphasized the great law of morality characterizing a Puritan society. The punishment of being isolated, resulting in the shifting of the lives of four member of the community, illustrates the spiritual and psychological cost of pursuing love, and illuminates the truth of the harsh ethic of the Puritan society. As characters develop, they find different ways of dealing with their sin, which will ultimately affect how they will progress throughout the story. Hawthorne’s criticism of Puritan
Hester and Dimmesdale’s grief is a direct outcome of the unforgiving implications that the Puritans put on adultery. By choosing to embrace her actions, Hester flourishes and presents the scarlet letter with a new meaning. Hester has no way of hiding her sins like Dimmesdale since she is pregnant. Hester’s punishment was to stand for three hours on the scaffold and wear the scarlet letter on her chest for the rest of her life. Initially, the people of the Boston were cold and scorned Hester for her sins.
Everyone can be forgiven for their mistakes, despite the views of those surrounding them. The Puritans believe in harsh penalties for committing sins because God’s punishment would be worse than any earthly trial. When Hester Prynne gets caught committing adultery and premarital sex, her punishment is extremely severe. She is thrown in prison, forced to wear a large letter A on her chest for the rest of her life, forced to raise her daughter Pearl and is publically humiliated upon a scaffold. Despite this lifelong punishment, many of the townspeople feel that Hester got off too easy; as the written punishment for adultery is death.
The occurrences of a threat towards Hester to lose custody of her child and her punishment for adultery were directly brought upon by Chillingworth. Hester did not love Chillingworth anymore and she could not love him ever . Her thought process on Chillingworth is why she committed adultery. Losing custody of Pearl was due to the punishment inflicted on her because of her disloyalty to
The Scarlet Letter and Easy A are the stories of women who defy their societies. Hester, of The Scarlet Letter commits adultery but refuses to reveal Dimmesdale or Chillingworth in order to both men from public humiliation. Hester is forced to bear the burden of her punishment alone, while her partner is held up as saintly. Olive, of Easy A, pretends to sleep with various boys in order to protect them from bullying and to boost their social statuses and inadvertently gives herself a bad reputation in doing so. Because both Hester and Olive defy their society’s views of femininity, they are ostracized by their unforgiving and judgemental societies as sinners; however, both women are actually saints who through their good deeds improve their
When spoken, the word ‘sin’ always seems to have a negative tone; when discussing the sins another has committed, it usually coincides with a condescending view. In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s well-known novel, The Scarlet Letter, the main character, Hester Prynne, committed the sin of adultery. In the time period of the Puritans, adultery was one of the most shameful crimes, considering how strictly they followed the bible. Once word travels around town the way rumours tend to do, Hester quickly becomes the center of attention in the community. There are various impacts; not only on her, but the entire community, with the birth of her barbaric child whom defies the standard Puritan etiquette, and the man who is also guilty and silently suffering.
Hawthorne notes that Hester and her babe are similar due to the fact that they are both outcasts from society. In contrast, however, Hester has sinned and Pearl is pure, but now they are both paying the consequences of Hester’s adultery. Overall, the response
“Guilt is the source of sorrows, the avenging fiend that follows us behind with whips and stings.” - Nicholas Rowe. This message is shown in The Scarlet Letter, through Hawthorne’s character Dimmesdale. Dimmesdale was created by Nathaniel Hawthorne representing a weak character in many ways. One of the many weak decisions made by Hawthorne that stood out was the guilt he had built up, eating away at him causing an internal struggle if he should do right and confess or if he should let the one he loves suffer because of his actions. Hawthorne sent messages throughout this film, people must accept responsibility for their actions or suffer the consequences and the choices people make determine what they become.
The Scarlet Letter is about the Puritan society and the outcome of the immoral decisions of the protagonist, Hester Prynne. Nathaniel Hawthorne has an overall unfavorable view against Hester and her choices, so his storyline involves many consequences for her. The author chooses to stand from a Puritan’s point of view in the novel since Puritans are against sinning. Hester Prynne wears the scarlet letter as an accessory as well as an acceptance of her consequence for not sharing any details about her sin. Throughout The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne is critical of any character committing a sin, so Hester Prynne exemplifies his criticism as she portrays an immoral protagonist.