As stated in chapter six, "Her [Hester] only real comfort was when the child lay in the placidity of sleep. Then she was sure of her, and tasted hours of quiet, sad, delicious happiness; until—perhaps with that perverse expression glimmering from beneath her opening lids—little Pearl awoke!" (Hawthorne X) Pearl is Hester 's greatest treasure, but she cost Hester everything. Because of Pearl, Hester has no chance at a happy life, but Pearl brings her happiness. Pearl is almost like a paradox.
Hester gave Pearl and herself a life of seclusion by living outside of the town. “Children have always a sympathy in the agitations of those connected with them; always, especially, a sense of any trouble or impending revolution, of whatever kind, in domestic circumstances; and therefore Pearl, who was the gem on her mother's unquiet bosom, betrayed, by the very dance of her spirits, the emotions which none could detect in the marble passiveness of Hester's brow.” (21.4) Pearl’s intelligent, perceptive, unorthodox attitude possibly was do to her never around other children. Hester in many occasions calls Pearl mythical begins because she had a supernatural aspect about her. Pearl becomes the scarlet letter in the flesh, by being the physical effect of Hester’s actions.
In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne uses symbols to reflect Hester's problems with The Scarlet letter, the meteor and pearl. The first form of symbolism and most mentioned symbols throughout the book is the “A”. The scarlet letter is the letter “A” worn by Hester Prynne and, the letter that is embroidered onto all of Hester's clothing. The letter “A” represents hester's sin adultery.
“Again, as if her mother’s agonized gesture were meant only to make sport for her, did little Pearl look into her eyes, and smile!” (p 82). Pearl herself being the product of sin, is a constant reminder to her mother that the scarlet letter cannot be neglected. Hawthorne shows this symbolism various times throughout the story. In Chapter two, during the first scaffold scene when Hester tries to hide away her scarlet letter with Pearl, Hawthorne indicates how useless that would be, considering that Pearl is the personification of her sin.
When Hester and Pearl went to the Governor's Hall, “Hester looked by way of humouring the child; and she saw that, owing to the peculiar effect of this convex mirror, 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” (103). Hawthorne explains that after committing the crime, Hester’s life was hidden by the scarlet letter. She was no longer seen as Hester Prynne, but as the scarlet woman; she was viewed differently by society and
Nathaniel Hawthorne 's The Scarlet Letter tells the story of the life of Hester Prynne an adulteress forced to wear a Scarlet “A” on her bosom by the sinister Puritan society to mark her shame. As her husband seeks revenge for the unidentified lover, Arthur Dimmesdale stays wracked with guilt. The Scarlet Letters symbolism and use of allusions, metaphors, setting, irony, diction, and varied tone helps to unwrap the characters throughout the novel. Hawthornes motives for writing the The Scarlet Letter was to show how women can be equally as strong and independent as men as men can also be morally weak. Hawthorne uses his abilities to weave tone, mood, and style all into one story questioning his purpose of this tragic tale of shame and redemption.
The letter “A” she wore symbolized adultery and having Pearl makes her sin more obvious. Pearl was even raised to believe she came from sin when Hester says, “Thy Heavenly Father sent thee!”(Hawthorne). Pearl then responds, “I have no Heavenly Father!”(Hawthorne). This demonstrates that because she was born from an adulterous relationship, she has been raised to believe she has
Pearl states how she doesn 't care about her mother 's sin, and she is proud to be her mother 's child. In conclusion, Hester, Gov. Bellingham has been through enough painful punishments for her crime and needs Pearl for companionship and support. Hester was tormented and publicly humiliated for having Pearl and after going threw all that torment she deserves to keep her daughter Pearl. " But she named the infant "Pearl," as being of great price ,—purchased with all she had,— her mother 's only treasure!" ( Hawthorne, 73).
Hester shares the physiological stress of the sinful act of adultery in her chest. The fact that she did not reveal the partner, says she wants to save someone else's dignity and reputation than herself. The Scarlet Letter is embraced by Hester, but signifies the shame and malignant reputation that is to come. After being in prison for
We are all sinners, no matter how hard we try to hide our faults, they always seem to come back, one way or another. Written in the 19th century, Nathaniel Hawthorne shows us Hester Prynne and how one sin can change her life completely. Hester Prynne changes a great deal throughout The Scarlet Letter. Through the view of the Puritans, Hester is an intense sinner; she has gone against the Puritan way of life committing the highest act of sin, adultery. For committing such a sinful act, Hester must wear the scarlet letter while also having to bear stares from those that gossip about her.
However, Pearl’s answer to the catechism question caused everyone to go against Hester. And so because of this, Hester had to rely on Dimmesdale for support. Dimmesdale added to Hester 's argument and stated that Pearl is "a child of its father 's guilt and its mother 's shame"
My first introduction of Hester Prynne, from what the author described, showed that she wore the Scarlet Letter on her chest with pride and she showed no sense of remorse on her face. “In a moment, however, wisely judging that one token of her shame would but poorly serve to hide another, she took the baby on her arm, and, with a burning blush, and yet a haughty smile, and a glance that would not be abashed, looked around at her townspeople and neighbors.” (pg.46) My response would be “how could she commit an act so unholy as a mother, and display pride?” The comparison and contrast that Hawthorne makes between Hester and her baby is that her baby is a sin-born infant but never committed an act of adultery.
Triads of Characters and Theme Author Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote The Scarlet Letter with a handful of characters and symbolic objects that truly influence the theme of this novel. Many important pairings and triads are involved through Chapter 8 of his novel, but perhaps the most important of the inventory of well connected triads is the one which relates to the theme of the novel. The triad of Hester Prynne, Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, and Pearl best helps the reader comprehend Hawthorne’s theme of sin.
It is estimated that an average of 130,000,000 babies are born each year around the world. (Ross 2). These infants possess given names that have significances behind it such as a saint name, after another family member, or a trait that the word possesses. Correspondingly, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s, The Scarlet Letter characters develop entitlements to names that have specific meanings. Pearl Prynne and Reverend Dimmesdale reinforce character names that possess deeper definitions.
“The most painful moral struggles are not those between good and evil, but between the good and the lesser good.” - Barbara Grizzuti Harrison. “The Outcasts of Poker Flat” and The Scarlet Letter both contain ordinary characters that demonstrate the inborn moral ambiguity in everyone. In The Scarlet Letter, Hester Prynne is branded a criminal for her sins.