Isolation And Secret Guilt By Nathaniel Hawthorne

1257 Words Nov 18th, 2015 6 Pages
Jessica Beattie
English 251
Mrs. Reeves
7 November 2015
Isolation and Secret Guilt The Puritans believe that it is their job, as well as the job of the communities in which they live, to glorify God in everything they do by living holy lives. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter” is a novel about the struggles that Hester, Chillingworth, and Dimmesdale, have to face living in a Puritan society. Throughout the novel these three characters are faced with isolation and secret guilt. All three have to face their sins both internally and externally.
“Crimes are committed under protest of the soul, more or less decided, as the weary soul itself has been more or less besieged and broken. The war in the individual begins, and the result of the fierce struggle is the victory of the sensual over the spiritual, when the criminal act is committed.” (Loring. 3) Hawthorne starts the beginning of the story by putting Hester through a sense of isolation when she is sent off by her husband to live in Boston who will join her later although it takes longer than planned. While there, she commits adultery with the minister. “Hester may have violated the seventh commandment, but she emerges as a free spirit who has integrated her sexual life into her being and now Dimmesdale notwithstanding, lives a rather Christ-like life in public.” (Erdirich 5) Unlike Dimmesdale, who keeps his identity as her lover a secret, Hester has to walk around with the guilt of their child and a scarlet…
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