Scarlet Letter Essays (Examples)

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" (Hawthorne, 71) This statement of intent strikes as a core romantic value, contending with no small degree of irony that there is a sense of moral authority in the air which bears a dominant effect on the lives of New Englanders. Indeed, this is consistent with our understanding of Hawthorne's critical response to the forces of Puritanism.
That the author is from the infamous settlement of Salem, Massachusetts, commonly referenced for its dark rash of institutionalized colonial era murders, all directed toward women accused of witchcraft, may be perceived as a meaningful context through which to understand the generally damning perspective which the author demonstrates in his work toward the gender order defining civil life. As we see in the Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne was generally fixated on the destructive dynamic which governed man's relationship with woman in such a society. That Hester could be so transformed against her will is….

" This seems powerful evidence that she has not accepted Puritan gender roles, but instead, is defending and helping to uplift the man who got her into this situation, and who is looked up to as a spiritual leader, while she is a spiritual outcast. The contrast is striking between the two, yet she is the strong one.
There was neither "irritation or irksomeness" in Hester (124) and the "blameless purity of her life during all these years in which she had been set apart to infamy, was reckoned largely in her favor." On page 128, more back-up to the fact that she made the most of a bad situation, and emerged in effect thumbing her nose at the Puritan fanaticism that put her to public shame: "...Her life had turned in a great measure, from passion and feeling, to thought... [and] the world's law was no law for her mind."….

They also become physically afflicted, afflicted in their corrupt and judgmental flesh, in the case of Chillingworth, rotting like a plant.
Hawthorne's fairy-tale like ending, however unrealistic it may sound, because surely the bad and cowardly are not always punished by death and despair, does strike one true note. People who morally condemn others are entirely dependant upon finding moral causes to uphold, and people to defame. ith no one to blame, and with their principles shown to be misguided, they have nothing to live for. ith no one to condemn, Chillingworth has no reason to exist. His morality has no positive force to help others, only to hurt and judge.

It is not hard for me to see many Chillingsworths on television today. Turn on Fox News, and hear people condemn others whom they see as immoral. They are always right, and others are always wrong. But if they did….

Scarlet Letter Is One of
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That's a very sad thing and it again shows that lack of forgiveness in the Puritan society of 16th century. Pearl thus stands for innocence in the novel- innocence that is tainted by someone else's sins.
Dimmesdale represents the psychological damage that wrong teachings of the Church could produce. He is also symbolizing the weakness in the structure of the Church. He is a minister who preaches people against adultery but has committed a sin himself. He is a human being and if seen with compassion, he should be allowed to have a family but the Church sees him as a sinner and the constant pain and anguish that he undergoes leads to serious psychological damage. He is so upset with the Church that he proclaims: "Were I an atheist...I might have found peace, long ere now" (1499

Chillingworth is the husband who went missing for few years during which Hester….

Hester refers to her label as a "passport" revealing that it is freeing for her, and Dimmesdale is able to preach and understand humanity better because of his relationship. True sin is not understood by the other preachers, but evil is found in the closeness of love and hate in the society.
Another major theme in the Scarlet Letter is identity. Hester embraces her "A" identity and refuses to leave the town so that she can remove the label and restart her life. She does not want it to be removed or to leave the town because that would prove others have power over her, rather than showing that she does not feel shame for who she is. Hester's adulterous relationship is something that she admits is a part of her identity, and she does not want to discard that aspect of herself. Dimmesdale struggles because he is not able….

As written in the novel, can teach my little Pearl what I have learned from this!"
In the side of Dimmesdale, on the other hand, the effect of the sin he committed is perhaps stronger and more painful than Hester's because the bad effects caused by his sin were not instigated by the people around him, but by himself. Being a minister, Dimmesdale was known in his community as a man of respect and honor. When he committed adultery, he didn't want to confess his sin because he didn't want to lose the good reputation that the people have for him. What happened is Dimmesdale struggled from the guilt that he kept only to himself until it started to destroy his mind and emotion. He even came to the point of inflicting pain to himself, all caused by shame and guilt of the sin he did.

The effect of the sin….

hen women try to fling mud at Hester, as they are 'supposed' to do, because she is an adulteress, Pearl, the "imp," "who was a dauntless child, after frowning, stamping her foot, and shaking her little hand with a variety of threatening gestures, suddenly made a rush at the knot of her enemies, and put them all to flight." (Hawthorne, 1850, Chapter 7)
After giving birth to her daughter Pearl, Hester's early mode of opposition to society changes and becomes broader. Rather than simply show her resistance through sexual defiance, her defiance begins to embrace the entire Puritan structure of ruler. Her opposition becomes more internal, as she becomes more and more critical of societal standards beyond the purely sexual and material. hen are still flashes of the old Hester, as when she sees her old husband, Chillingworth: "Be it sin or no,' said Hester Prynne bitterly, as she still….

Scarlet Letter
PAGES 5 WORDS 1921

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne [...] ways in which the book is a critique of Puritanism. "The Scarlet Letter" was written in 1850, but it takes place in the 1600s, when Puritanism was at its height in New England. Hester Prynne, the heroine of the novel, is ostracized by a very strict and proper Puritan society, because of her affair with the evered Arthur Dimmesdale. Puritan society had strict moral codes, and when they were violated, there was no forgiveness. Hawthorne used the book as a strong critique on Puritanism that lasts until this day, and shows just how unbending the founders of New England were in the ways of the world.
Nathaniel Hawthorne's view of Puritanism is clear in "The Scarlet Letter." He shows it as an unyielding, strict, and highly moral religion that allowed little deviance from established values. He also shows the Puritan leaders as moral judges,….

Scarlet Letter
PAGES 3 WORDS 888

Scarlet Letter. There are three references used for this paper.
The novel "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne has been a classic for many years. It is important to examine the theme Hawthorne develops and how he exhibits it through the lives of his characters.

Sin and Guilt

Hawthorne carries the theme of sin and guilt throughout his novel. This theme is noticeable in the plot line and is illustrated through the main characters of Hester Prynne, Arthur Dimmesdale and Roger Chillingworth.

Hester Prynne

Hester is a married woman who arrives from England prior to her husband, Roger Chillingworth. Hester commits the sin of adultery and having a daughter out of wedlock. She refuses to name the father of her child and is forced to live with guilt by wearing a scarlet "A" on her gown.

Hester is also guilty of hiding the fact the Chillingworth is her husband, and upon telling Dimmesdale the truth,….

Scarlet Letter
PAGES 2 WORDS 701

Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter is secrecy. Each of the book's central characters: Hester Prynne, Roger Chillingworth, and Arthur Dimmesdale, possess a secret related to his or her identity. Hester hides the truth behind her adulterous affair and shrouds the identity of Pearl's father. However, Hester lives with public scorn, as she has to wear the titular scarlet letter on her breast. Hester's husband Chillingworth directly hides his identity; only Hester knows the truth about the vengeful doctor. hile both Hester and Chillingworth keep their secrets mainly hidden from the public, they nevertheless live much as they would like, within the confines of their secrets. For instance, Hester pursues her embroidery and charity work and humbly accepts her fate. Chillingworth dedicates his new life in America to both being a doctor and to exacting revenge on Hester and her lover. On the other hand, Dimmesdale does not wear….


The child also sometimes behaves as if she is possessed. Perhaps this is because she is being raised as a "little adult" by her mother. As an only child, she often seems much older than her real age, and this can also seem like she is possessed by an adult to the people around her. These actions frighten both her mother and the townspeople, creating the idea that she is somehow dark and terrifying in their minds. Other critics have also confirmed Pearl's darker side, noting that Hawthorne uses her as a symbol of the darker, devilish spirit the townspeople fear. Critic Alfred eid writes, "The character of Pearl likewise exemplifies Hawthorne's tendency to allegorize spiritual phenomena" (eid 117). Like most people, they see what they see and make it into something they want to believe. Pearl is different, and so she must be evil. It is clear she is….

hile some individuals may believe that it is their right to frolic on the beach or even walk down the street without clothing, society as a whole has decided that this behavior is offensive.
According to Peter Alces, morality is dynamic and may change over time, both from the individual and the group perspective. For example, slavery was once considered acceptable, a societal norm, a necessary economic institution (Alces). Yet, now it is perceived as vile and unnatural. It is considered a shameful era of history. Adultery was once considered a great sin, both for the individual and for society. Hester's adultery caused a woman to cry out, "This woman has brought shame upon us all, and ought to die" (Hawthorne Chapter 2). Today, adultery, while not necessarily condoned, is typically regarded as a private matter.

Thaddeus Metz writes, "rongness admits of degrees...some actions are more wrong than others...There is a….

She was a good woman, and she raised a good daughter. She shows how the Puritans also would not accept her because of her mother. This also symbolizes their intolerance, because they blame the child for the sins of the parent, and the child has no chance of redeeming herself. Hawthorne uses a child to make it more clear how intolerant and mean-spirited the Puritans were, and to show her innocence in the matter, but how it affected her, too.
In conclusion, Pearl symbolizes many things in "The Scarlet Letter." She symbolizes her mother's sin, she symbolizes the devil, and she symbolizes the intolerance of the Puritan religion, which would not even accept an innocent child. She is a sad character, because she is affected so much by what her mother did. She cannot escape her mother's sin, and so, she is a constant reminder to her mother that she….

Scarlet Letter the Use of
PAGES 2 WORDS 701


The darkness and fire of Hester stands in contrast with Roger Chillingworth, a harsh, cold judgmental man. His quest for the truth and illumination of Hester's condition becomes an evil quest. hen the reader is fully introduced to him in Chapter 10, the perversion of light is seen as Hawthorne writes of his gaze: "Sometimes a light glimmered out of the physician's eyes, burning blue and ominous, like the reflection of a furnace." The Reverend Dimmesdale, Pearl's true father, can only meet Hester in darkness and night, and vision is given only by a "little glimmering light" by moonlight. Rather than goodness, the knowledge and light of Pearl's parentage cannot survive the fuller light of day. Truth comes in darkness, and the light brings concealment of Hester's secret once again. This constant confusion of light and dark shows how truth and morality are confused in the novel.

Only when Dimmesdale fully….

Teenage fathers are not similarly sent away, or encouraged to finish their high school educations at schools specifically designed for teenage fathers. Even sexually active teens whose activities have not resulted in pregnancy are able to continue along their educational lives in a normal social fashion, because their 'sin' is not revealed to the adult community in such an obvious fashion.
This sort of irrational attitude towards unwanted sexuality, or regarding it as an infection rather than a natural part of human existence, parallels the Puritan community's treatment of Hester. It is also reflected in contemporary fears of distributing condoms, educating students about birth control, or providing adequate information about how to deal with unplanned sex and pregnancies, like using the 'morning after' pill or abortion. The idea that merely possessing sexual knowledge generates the common, human impulse of sexual desire, and even having the tools to engage in sexually….

Here are some good suggestions:

Scarlet Letter Essay Titles

  1. Puritanical Standards Undermine the Christian Principle of Charity in Hawthorne’s Scarlett Letter
  2. The Love-Child of Hester Prynne:  Writing Straight with Crooked Lines
  3. Hawthorne’s Scarlett Letter is a 19th Century Takedown of Cancel Culture
  4. Modern Day Cancel Culture Rejected by Hawthorne in The Scarlett Letter
  5. Labeling Theory as an Explanation for the Use of the “A” in The Scarlett Letter
  6. How the Two-Faced Puritanical Ideology of American Society is Reflected in Hawthorne’s Scarlett Letter
  7. Redemption through Repentance, Confession and Penance:  Salvation in The Scarlett Letter
  8. A Catholic Approach to Christianity Illuminates The Scarlett Letter
  9. Why The Scarlett Letter is the Great American....

Selecting Essay Topics that Cover a Book

1. Character Analysis

Topic: The protagonist's struggle with identity and purpose in Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird."
Focus: Examine the protagonist's evolving self-awareness, the challenges they face, and how their journey shapes their character.

2. Theme Exploration

Topic: The theme of prejudice and its impact on society in Alice Walker's "The Color Purple."
Focus: Analyze how the novel portrays different forms of prejudice, its consequences, and the characters' responses to it.

3. Symbolism and Imagery

Topic: The use of symbolism and imagery to create atmosphere in Emily Brontë's "Wuthering Heights."
Focus: Discuss how specific symbols....

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3 Pages
Essay

Literature

Scarlet Letter Hester's Transformation as

Words: 1041
Length: 3 Pages
Type: Essay

" (Hawthorne, 71) This statement of intent strikes as a core romantic value, contending with no small degree of irony that there is a sense of moral authority in…

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5 Pages
Term Paper

Mythology - Religion

Scarlet Letter & the Rapture

Words: 1859
Length: 5 Pages
Type: Term Paper

" This seems powerful evidence that she has not accepted Puritan gender roles, but instead, is defending and helping to uplift the man who got her into this situation,…

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1 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter -- the Aftermath

Words: 484
Length: 1 Pages
Type: Term Paper

They also become physically afflicted, afflicted in their corrupt and judgmental flesh, in the case of Chillingworth, rotting like a plant. Hawthorne's fairy-tale like ending, however unrealistic it may…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter Is One of

Words: 888
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

That's a very sad thing and it again shows that lack of forgiveness in the Puritan society of 16th century. Pearl thus stands for innocence in the novel-…

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1 Pages
Term Paper

Mythology - Religion

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Words: 412
Length: 1 Pages
Type: Term Paper

Hester refers to her label as a "passport" revealing that it is freeing for her, and Dimmesdale is able to preach and understand humanity better because of his…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter Various Effects of

Words: 644
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

As written in the novel, can teach my little Pearl what I have learned from this!" In the side of Dimmesdale, on the other hand, the effect of the…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Sports - Women

Scarlet Letter - The Individual

Words: 685
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

hen women try to fling mud at Hester, as they are 'supposed' to do, because she is an adulteress, Pearl, the "imp," "who was a dauntless child, after…

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5 Pages
Term Paper

Mythology - Religion

Scarlet Letter

Words: 1921
Length: 5 Pages
Type: Term Paper

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne [...] ways in which the book is a critique of Puritanism. "The Scarlet Letter" was written in 1850, but it takes place in…

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3 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter

Words: 888
Length: 3 Pages
Type: Term Paper

Scarlet Letter. There are three references used for this paper. The novel "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne has been a classic for many years. It is important to…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter

Words: 701
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter is secrecy. Each of the book's central characters: Hester Prynne, Roger Chillingworth, and Arthur Dimmesdale, possess a secret related to his or…

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4 Pages
Essay

Children

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Words: 1455
Length: 4 Pages
Type: Essay

The child also sometimes behaves as if she is possessed. Perhaps this is because she is being raised as a "little adult" by her mother. As an only child,…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Sociology

Scarlet Letter According to Tony

Words: 703
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

hile some individuals may believe that it is their right to frolic on the beach or even walk down the street without clothing, society as a whole has…

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4 Pages
Term Paper

Mythology - Religion

Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Words: 1512
Length: 4 Pages
Type: Term Paper

She was a good woman, and she raised a good daughter. She shows how the Puritans also would not accept her because of her mother. This also symbolizes…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Literature

Scarlet Letter the Use of

Words: 701
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

The darkness and fire of Hester stands in contrast with Roger Chillingworth, a harsh, cold judgmental man. His quest for the truth and illumination of Hester's condition becomes an…

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2 Pages
Term Paper

Women's Issues - Sexuality

Scarlet Letter -- Still Relevant

Words: 697
Length: 2 Pages
Type: Term Paper

Teenage fathers are not similarly sent away, or encouraged to finish their high school educations at schools specifically designed for teenage fathers. Even sexually active teens whose activities…

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