Scarlet Letter Light Vs Darkness Quotes

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In The Scarlet Letter, light symbolizes knowledge. It is present each time a character gains knowledge, and absent when knowledge is concealed. Ancient humans equated knowledge to a light or a flame. In the Greek myth of Prometheus, Prometheus stole the flame of creativity from Zeus. Gifting it to humans, he bestowed new knowledge to them. The central motif of Dante's Inferno is darkness. This darkness represents to human confusion, lack of knowledge, and uncertainty, and modern literature uses it frequently. The forms that light and darkness takes throughout the novel are not consistent, yet, they invariably represent the lack or gain of knowledge.
Pearl is presented to the world for the first time, atop the town’s scaffold. Up until this point, her entire existence was confined to the stone walls and the “gray twilight of a dungeon” (59). The scene invoked by the word “twilight”(59), is hazy, confusing, and misleading. Pearl’s origin is meant to be interrupted the same way. Her …show more content…

While facing the disgusted members of the community, and the pleading Minister Dimmesdale, Hester refused to betray the identity of this man.Refusing to give up the name of Pearl’s father, this knowledge is guarded by Hester "beneath the eaves of Boston's earliest Church" (62). The position that Hawthorne describes places Hester in the shadow of the Church. This symbolizes that it is the dominant presence of the Church, which pressures Hester to hide this secret. The puritan lifestyle is completely governed by the rules and doctrines of the Church.These two aspects are so intertwined with puritan life, that it was required to go to Church every day or face a public whipping. The fear that leaders of the Puritan community instilled in their followers served as a deterrent against disobeying the Church. It is this same fear which ensures Hester’s silence, so that the father, Minister Dimmesdale, can be shielded from the inevitable

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