The townspeople gave Hester the punishment of wearing a scarlet letter “A” on her chest, and using her as an example of a transgressor. Hester’s husband hates her and for doing an adultery act while he was lost at sea. They both despise each other, for they think of betrayal. Though they both committed a wrong act. The puritan religion has strict beliefs, and anyone who lives in the town must follow all the strict rules.
The motive behind her deeds has deep roots in the susceptibilities of the society she lives in. There is a tangible social tension and an innate inequality, which sweepingly grows into sexism, racism, and other -ism based discrimination. What is even more problematic is that such issues are left unspoken - there is no open discussion about their rightness and the consequences of spreading rumours or isolating the women from the social and political life. That is why it is safe to assume that one of the reasons Abigail Williams falsely accuses so many people without showing any signs of guilt or remorse is her outspoken resentment towards Salem and its residents. Since the beginning of the play she has been notorious because of the village rumors about her provocative and quite manipulative behavior.
Pearl is seen as a devil child by the Puritan community, even making her own mother question her humanity. “...sometimes so malicious… that Hester could not help questioning, at such moments, whether Pearl was a human child” (Hawthorne 101). In the novel she is shown scaring away other children by throwing rocks at them. Described as, “An imp of evil, emblem and product of sin,” Pearl represents the scarlet A in a negative way (Hawthorne 102). Being the legitimate symbol of the scarlet letter herself, Pearl’s biggest symbolic representation is Hester’s sin.
“Beauty is the mark God sets upon virtue.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature. A woman, in the eyes of the Puritans, due to her unvirtuous act, was given an unbeautiful gift. They believe she was given a demon child for her sin.
I will prove why Hannah should be sentenced to the seventh circle, round two of hell. Hannah Baker should be sent to hell because she harms herself and does not ask God for forgiveness.
When Hester is forced to the scaffold the first time she gets emotionally berated for her sin as the scaffold starts defining who she is. She becomes unstable and afraid of what people think. She can’t try to defend herself as she has a chance to be killed for what she has done, so she takes the heat without letting anyone know who her spouse is. They said that she could take the
Hester’s sin not only affects herself, but also affects many other characters including the Puritans, Roger Chillingworth, Arthur Dimmesdale and her daughter Pearl. Hester’s sin leads other characters to commit their own sins. Nathaniel Hawthorne uses The Scarlet Letter as clear testament to the effects of sin. The Puritans in Boston are painted as judgmental and intolerant people.
Hester Prynne 's sin was a violation against that of Puritan laws, she was a public sinner but her sin was widely identified and found offensive by the Puritan community that set rigid and oppressive rules that Hester seamessely violated. The ridicule from the Puritan society towards Hester is illustrated at the beginning of the novel where Hawthorne asserts, “In all her intercourse with society, however, there was nothing that made her feel as if she belonged to it. Every gesture, every word, and even the silence of those with whom she came in contact, implied and often expressed, that she was banished, and as much alone as if she inhabited another sphere...” (Hawthorne 63). Similarly, Rachel Dolezal although her wrong-doings are recognized amongst a wide range of people, her false identification as a black women has immensely hurt black Americans specifically due to the fact that her actions were in direct effect of black lives and her idea of racial fluidity, which essentially is when one believes they can change their identification of what race they believe they are, deeply insulted black people rather than the contrary (Oluo 2).
The following quote represents how this mentally affects Hester and an individual, in general, and how it can be as equally as severe as a physical punishment. “...a penalty which in our days would infer of mocking infamy and ridicule might then be invested with
By choosing to have an affair even though she was married, Hester created a life for herself that was filled with “guilt, sinkings of heart, and misfortune” because of her choice to disobey her religious morals (Hawthorne 150). Although she was extremely embarrassed of her actions, believing that she was even unworthy of death, Hester forced herself to live beyond her tragic situation and use it to grow as a person and strengthen her view on standing against the Puritan probity that the town was based upon. In order to punish her, the town forced Hester to wear a scarlet “A” upon her breast, which was meant to represent a “badge of shame” (Hawthorne 150). Through the scarlet hue of the “A”, as well as it being located above Hester’s heart, Hawthorne was able to reference the symbol of a heart that he consistently used throughout the book to describe her mentality. At this point in Hester’s life, the ignominious letter upon her breast symbolized “drops of bitterness” and guilt beginning to fill her heart.
“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.
Katerina Kilgore Mrs. Gardner AP English 10 March 2017 “Chronic remorse…is a most undesirable sentiment” “Chronic remorse, as all the moralists are agreed, is a most undesirable sentiment. If you have behaved badly, repent, make what amends you can and address yourself to the task of behaving better next time. On no account brood over your wrongdoing.
In The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the element of change is paramount in the understanding of Hester’s personal transformation as well as her relationships with Dimmesdale, Chillingworth, and the Puritan community. Throughout the story, all three of Hester’s major relationships go through many shifts that affect the plot of the book. In the beginning, none of Hester’s relationships are benefiting to her. However, they slowly progress into either a loving relationship or relentless bitterness towards one another.
In the book “The Scarlet Letter” written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Hester Prynne is charged with adultery in the Puritan society. The Puritan society saw her as a disgrace. Her punishment would have been death, but no one in the community knew if Hester’s husband is alive or dead. Instead her punishment is to wear a scarlet letter A on her clothing and public humiliation. Hester works through her sin and atonement in the beginning, middle, and end of the book.
Enough evidence was given in the book that Hester deserves the punishment. To prove that she does, Hester was raised as a Puritan so she knew what would be the consequences she has committed adultery and is left with a baby alone to raise without a father role model. As well she is not suited to be a mother. She can’t keep Pearl.