Being Earnest By Oscar Wilde

1332 Words Oct 27th, 2014 6 Pages
In the novel The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde, Wilde quotes, “I hope [he] has not been leading a double life, pretending to be wicked and being good all the time. That would be hypocrisy.” Wilde’s quote is indirectly connected to the idea of moral ambiguity that The Scarlet Letter portrays. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s classic novel The Scarlet Letter depicts the actuality of romance, sin, and revenge rooted in the 17th century American society. Strong Puritan beliefs of the characters in The Scarlet Letter created many different forms of moral ambiguity that can be described as illustrating both good and evil. Among the characters in the Scarlet letter with such moral struggle, Dimmesdale is presented to the readers as an outwardly honorable man who is constantly clashing his desires to be honorable and his other evil ambitions. Hawthorne is able to use Dimmesdale 's moral ambiguity in The Scarlet Letter to demonstrate human frailty, ultimately suggesting that hypocrisy results indescribable guilt causing failure to reach salvation.
Dimmesdale’s moral ambiguity can be seen from the beginning of the novel. He is a highly renowned minister in The Scarlet Letter who is known to be an honorable man to the public but is privately corrupted. Dimmesdale 's worst sin begins at the beginning of the novel during Hester’s trial. At the trial, Dimmesdale tells Hester “to speak out the name of [her] fellow-sinner and fellow-sufferer! Be not silent from any mistaken pity and…
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