Rhetorical Devices In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

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Hawthorne uses chapter twenty-two, “The Procession”, to put all the pieces of the puzzle of the conflict together. This is where the reader remotely begins to understand how the ending of the novel will come to an end. To reveal the conclusion to the reader, Hawthorne uses rhetorical devices such as, irony, simile, and diction. To expose the irony in this chapter, Hawthorne writes of Dimmesdale’s sermon. As Dimmesdale speaks, “if the auditor listened intently, and for the purpose, he could detect the same cry of pain.” Although his physical appearance has gotten tremendously better overnight, his inner turmoil is still continuing. This can be understood as the minister being “dead on the inside. If you look into this, it shows that he is still struggling with his sin. His audience still does not know that he shares the same scarlet letter as Hester. This is why his message gives him “his most appropriate power.” The irony in this, is how the only person that can interpret his sermon, is Hester herself, because they both share the same sin. Hawthorne uses the similes in the chapter, primarily to focus on Pearl, comparing her to birds, for some odd reason. It may possibly be to represent how jittery the readers…show more content…
Although Dimmesdale has appeared to have gotten healthier, “if the clergyman were rightly viewed, his strength seemed not of the body. It might be spiritual, and imparted to him by angelic ministrations.” After his discussion with Hester in the forest, he seemed to have been “healed”. The words Hawthorne uses to describe Dimmesdale are to reveal that the conflict inside himself, if still unresolved. Hawthorne says, “There was his body, moving onward, and with an unaccustomed force. But where was his mind?” Hester seems like the only one that can see this going on inside the beloved minister. As she sees this, she begins to reconsider the plan the two had conceived
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