Pearl plays an important role in the significance of the scarlet letter. Pearl is said to be the living embodiment of the letter. So much as it is even said that “Hester dressed the child in scarlet” (J 129). Hester has several consequences resulting from her sin, Pearl
In Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter, Hester Prynne, a Puritan woman, commits adultery with Reverend Dimmesdale. As a form of punishment, the judge forces Hester to wear a scarlet letter to signify her wrongdoing. The purpose of the scarlet letter is to correct Hester’s conduct. With the symbol of the scarlet letter, Hester’s Puritan community publicly judges and ridicules her. Today, judges sometimes still use public shaming as a form of punishment. For example, judges may order the offender to hold a sign describing the offense. Since the offender stands out in public, the community mocks and judges the offender. Judges should not use public shaming as a form of punishment towards an offender.
Society had now begun to think that Hester had served her punishment. Although Hester was not accepted society before, she began to see the positive aspects of the community and was able continue on with her own life which eventually led to her being recognition of good character. Eventually recognizing her sin she had become a symbol of the Puritan faith, and eventually found her place in the community in a positive way. In The Scarlet Letter, the whole period of time the letter "A" was embroidered on her clothing it only represented one ideology, which was adultery. However, as time continues forward the community begins to finally start accepting her again, through her positive actions and influences, the letter "A" starts to represent a more positive ideology. Through these actions, "Such helpfulness was found in her-so much power to do and power to sympathized -that many people refused to interpret the scarlet "A" by its original signification. They said that it meant "Able": so strong was Hester Prynne, with a woman 's strength" (Hawthorne
Furthermore, The Scarlet Letter and 1984 both show the reader how an individual can use their personal, sometimes unfortunate, situation to their advantage thereby making both novels, that are set in different historical time periods, very similar.
“That first object of which Pearl seemed to become aware was,—shall we say it?—the scarlet letter on Hester’s bosom...the infant’s eyes had been caught by the glimmering of the gold embroidery about the letter” (99). Pearl, a sinful creation, was first aware of the mark upon Hester's bosom that caused her mother so much suffering. Hester dressed Pearl to look like the scarlet letter because that was all her mother saw. Hester mostly had constant contact with Pearl and the scarlet letter, thus Pearl and the scarlet letter became close. They became so close that when Hester took off the scarlet letter near the brook, Pearl felt as if though Hester had pushed Pearl away from her. “Pearl took some eelgrass, and imitated, as best she could, on her own bosom, the decoration with which she was so familiar on her mother’s. A letter,—the letter A,—but freshly green, instead of scarlet!” (182). The eelgrass is green, the color green acts as a representation of positivity. She draws a scarlet letter upon herself because she connected with it. Pearl has no understanding yet that her mother, wore the red letter as a punishment. What she has understood is that she has a connection to the letter. Pearl will always connect the scarlet letter to herself and with her mother which explains why she thinks of it in a positive
It is quite obvious in Nathaniel Hawthorne 's The Scarlet Letter that Pearl, Hester Prynne 's daughter, plays a major role. Not only is she one of the main characters, but she is prevalent theme in the novel, as well. Pearl is not written like a regular character. Most of the other symbols in the story, such as the scarlet letter or the rose bush, lead back to Pearl. Pearl takes on many symbols and serves great purpose. In The Scarlet Letter is merely a symbol in the story, her function is to remind Hester of her sin which affects her role in the story to become more antagonistic to Hester.
Janie Crawford is the main character of Their Eyes Were Were Watching God. Their Eyes Were Were Watching God is set in the early 20th century in Southern Florida. Janie being a Half Black woman experiences colorism, racism, and misogyny. These social disadvantages lead to Janie facing adversity and discrimination throughout the book. Similarly, in The Scarlet Letter, the main character Hester Prynne is an adulterer in a Puritan society that outcasts her after she was driven into another mans arms by her neglectful husband. Each of these characters are similar in their pursuit of independence in their individual circumstances, but they have many notable physical and societal differences.
The Scarlet Letter written by author Nathaniel Hawthorne is an American novel based on sin and the act of Adultery. This novel is based on the early days of the Massachusetts colony and shows how differently crimes are approached then from now. Hester Prynne commits the unfaithful crime of Adultery and not only does she have to serve for her punishment, but her daughter serves for it as well. Pearl, the symbol of an act of forbidden love and passion has to live with being the reminder of her mother 's misconduct for her entire life. Growing up in a small town with her reputation, it is hard for Pearl to have any kind of normality in her life. Pearl is unlike the other children in many ways, she is an outcast and does not have a friendly relationship
In the scarlet letter when Hester has her baby she is being talked about by the townspeople. When the king says, “Make way good people, make way, in the kings name he cried open a passage; and I promise you mistress Prynne shall be set were men, woman, and child may have a fair sight….”(Hawthorne 52). In The Scarlet Letter the townspeople are talking about Hester and Pearl on how the crime of adultery has happened. Next in The Scarlet Letter, the girls are being unexpected by the church. When the town’s people are talking and they say, “At the very least, they should have put the brand of a hot iron on Hester Prynne’s forehead” (Hawthorne 49). The Scarlet Letter shows the church unaccepting of Hester and Pearl because of adultery. Finally, in The Scarlet Letter Hester realizes that all of her struggles are finally coming to ease. After the shamming has stopped, Hawthorne says, “Hester strong, calm, steadfast enduring spirit almost sank, at last on beholding this dark and grim countenance of inevitable doom…” (Hawthorne 241). In the end of The Scarlet Letter Hester has moved on along with the townspeople and she is finally being accepted in society. The Scarlet Letter features Hester who is not accepted by society, just like how the woman in the barrio is treated from “The
The scarlet letter is originally a symbol of shame. Instead the scarlet letter becomes a symbol of identity to Hester. The letter’s meaning shifts as time goes on. Originally it marked Hester as an adulterer. The letter “A” eventually comes to stand for “Able.” Native Americans who come to watch the Election Day pageant believe it marks Hester as a person of importance. Pearl is a reminder of Hester’s affair with Dimmesdale, and so the letter functions as a reminder as well. Compared with a human child, the letter is unimportant, and helps to point out the incoherence of the community’s system of punishment. The child has been sent from God, while the letter is just a human action.
In the beginning of the Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne introduces the main character Hester Prynne, a young, beautiful member of a Puritan society being punished for her sin of love, not lust. The opening chapters introduce the reader to gossips who deem her original punishment, death, too harsh and contrary to Puritan beliefs that unborn babies should be given a chance at life. Instead, Hester and her child are to be alienated and shunned. In addition she is to wear the letter ‘A’ (which stands for ‘adultery’) on her chest which will forever display her as a symbol of shame for her sin. Though a very resilient figure who soon overcomes this pain, Hester’s isolation takes a negative toll on her life. In a scene where Hester, the governor,
Hester, having lived among a Puritan doctrine for so long, cannot help but be influenced by it, and although she did what she did out of love, she does see her act as a sin. She is self-aware, penitent and rather dutiful to the puritan society and she bears her punishment according to the dogma humbly. For the seven solitary years, it is told that “Hester never battled the public, but submitted; uncomplainingly ...she never raised her head to receive their greeting. If they were resolute to accost her, she laid her finger on the scarlet letter, and pass on” (Hawthorne 92). Yet, she never succumbs to the community’s thoughts about her. She feels guilty for her action, but she is not ashamed of her own person or self. In his book, The Cycle of
Throughout The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, there are many symbols that correlate with the main characters. Symbolism is a major part of this novel and is shown most prominently through the characters Hester Prynne, Arthur Dimmesdale, and Pearl. The rosebush, the prison door, and the scarlet letter are the most important symbols that are dispersed throughout the novel and are within each of the three characters.
The townspeople “[began] to look upon the scarlet letter as a token, not of that one sin, for which she had borne so long and dreary a penance, but of her many good deeds since.” This quote exemplifies how sin is not a death sentence for Hester. Through hard work and charity it allowed the rigid Puritan society to see her as something different, and as someone who would not let society define who she was.
The scarlet letter separated Hester from society. “That SCARLET LETTER, so fantastically embroidered and illuminated upon her bosom. It had the effect of a spell, taking her out of the ordinary relations with humanity, and inclosing her in a sphere by herself,” (Hawthorne 37). Due to the nature of the scarlet letter representing the sin, it can be implied that sin separates one from society. Hester stated, “‘Once in my life I met the Black Man!’ said her mother. ‘This scarlet letter is his mark!’” (Hawthorn 127). Sin is the mark of the devil on a person. It is his way of saying, “I own this person.” In a sense the devil has claimed Hester as his own. It isn’t too surprising that the, “ first object of which Pearl seemed to become aware was—shall we say it?—the scarlet letter on Hester's bosom!” (Hawthorne 66). Through Pearl constantly looking at the scarlet letter, Hester got a constant reminder of what she did wrong. WHich drove her to be a better person. It is later revealed that Dimmesdale has also been claimed by the Black Man. “He has his hand over his heart! Is it because, when the minister wrote his name in the book, the Black Man set his mark in that place?” (Hawthorne 128). Rather than show to the whole world what he has done, Dimmesdale is keeping it secret. Choosing to suffer in private instead of in public. Because of this his health steadily deteriorated throughout the novel. There was a