Evil is In the Eyes of the Beholder: "The Scarlet Letter", by Nathaniel Hawthorne

1611 Words7 Pages
In society there are always two kinds of people, good people and bad people. The good people, the teachers pets who always do everything right. They follow the rules and always think of others. Then, you have to bad people, the trouble makers who always do the wrong thing. They break the rules and do things their way. Everyone is classified in one group or the other, and is always thought to be good or bad. In the novel, The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Pearl is evil. Pearl is doomed from the beginning to be evil. “In giving her existence, a great law [is] broken.” (80) Pearl’s evilness is ultimately credited from her roots. Hester’s sin caused Pearl to be corrupt even before she was born. As a punishment to her…show more content…
She knows about Dimmesdale’s sin, even though no one else does. Mistress Hibbins thinks of Pearl as being “ ‘the lineage of the Prince of the Air.’ ” (221) Pearl’s father is the devil, so she has to be pernicious. She was born to the devil, and her behavior reflects that. Mistress Hibbins is the equivalent to evil, and she thinks Pearl was the devil’s daughter. Mistress Hibbins wants to take Pearl to the forest so she can “ ‘see [her] father.’ ” (221) Pearl is born a child of the Black Man and he places her with Hester to punish her for her sin. Hester thinks of Pearl as evil. Hester is with Pearl every day, and she knows Pearl best. Pearl is a wicked little girl, and can be a nuisance to her mother. Hester can’t discipline her daughter and “[is] ultimately compelled to stand aside, and permit the child to be swayed by her own impulses.” (81) Hester can always use force to deal with her daughter, but this only lasts for so long. Pearl does her own thing, and Hester is forced not to discipline her, because she is so repugnant. Hester loves her daughter and loves to look in her eyes, but sometimes “[i]t [is] as if an evil spirit [possesses] the child, and … just then [peeps] forth in mockery.” (86) When Pearl looks at her mother Hester can see something evil and know that her child is nefarious. Pearl tells her mother that she has “no Heavenly Father.” (87) Pearl begs her mother to tell who her father is. Pearl gets her roots

More about Evil is In the Eyes of the Beholder: "The Scarlet Letter", by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Open Document