A common theme throughout literature is religion and how the author feels about his or her faith. Nathaniel Hawthorne uses rhetorical devices to draw comparisons between characters and events in The Scarlet Letter and Biblical figures and accounts. A few of the devices found in this novel that connect it to the Bible are symbolism, paradox, allusions, and characterization. It is important to first look at the characters and how they are described through characterization.
The first rhetorical device is characterization. The way the main characters are described by Hawthorne sets up how they will be perceived. It is through this that we see the first inklings of biblical figures. Biblical characters are seen …show more content…
However, when you examine them in greater depth it becomes apparent that there is more to them than there originally appeared to be. The first is that of the scarlet letter itself. The “A” was originally intended to show people that the person wearing it was a sinner who had committed adultery. However, as the novel develops it becomes more of a sign of heaven through the meaning of angel. This is first seen when an “A” appears in the sky shortly after the death of Governor Winthrop. It is at this time that the townspeople decide this is a sign that Governor Winthrop was a good Christian who has gone on to a better life. But the townspeople cannot help but realize that this is the same thing which the have made one of their own people, Hester, wear. Another symbol is found in what is one of Hester’s greatest skills. Her ability with a needle to sew and embroider better than anyone else has a lot more meaning than there appears to be. Hester uses sewing as her outlet when she is condemned by the townspeople, but it is through her seclusion and the sewing she does during her time alone that strengthens her faith in herself and God, much like Mary did after she first learned of her pregnancy. This faith proves very helpful to her in more trying times. Yet another symbol is made through the rosebush. The rose bush is a symbol of sin, and Pearl continues to claim
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In the "Scarlet Letter" Hester Prynne is forced to wear a scarlet letter "A" on her chest at all times as punishment for committing adultery. People see her much differently now that she has this mark upon her chest and start to treat her with disrespect and shun her. Throughout the novel the letter "A" changes from a symbol of her sin to one of that of perseverance and hope. The scarlet letter reminds Hester to raise her daughter Pearl so that she wouldn't make the same mistakes as her. Just as Hester, we had to wear our own versions of the scarlet letter upon Hester's chest for an entire day.
In the novel, Scarlett Letter, the Puritans live in a community bent on conforming to the common beliefs and values set by their society. Those whose ideas and values diverge from the norm are criticized and despised for their individualism. Hawthorne portrays this ignorance and conformity through the Puritans' belief that the forest is evil and unruly. However, because the forest is secluded far from the influences of society, Hawthorne suggests that in the forest people are able to express the individuality they are deprived of in their Puritan settlement. Thus, the forest, an embodiment of freedom and individuality, is used as a symbol to contrast the harsh Puritan society with the free nature of the forest in order to convey the
Throughout his novel, The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne reveals character through the use of imagery and metaphor.
A symbol is often used to represent an idea or a concept of value. In the novel The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne uses symbols that changes throughout the novel, particularly his characters who all serve a symbolic purpose. Hawthorne uses themes of sin to demonstrate how unavoidable sin is and shows the idea that sin results in suffering. The Scarlet Letter contains many symbols, including Pearl, The Scarlet Letter and the rose bush, which all contribute to the main themes of sin and its effects to the characters.
Nathaniel Hawthorne used a large amount of symbolism in his award winning book “The Scarlet Letter”. The symbolism Hawthorne uses in “The Scarlet Letter” can be a bit confusing at times and the symbols can be hard to identify in certain chapters. The symbols within the book are what make it such a classic novel.
“The Scarlet Letter is the most nearly static of all Hawthorne’s novels.” (73) This opinion-based quote from the article “The Characters Reveal the Story’s Meaning,” written by Hyatt H. Waggoner, can properly introduce Nathaniel Hawthorne’s most familiar novel, “The Scarlet Letter.” After close observation of said novel, it can be inferred that there is very little external conflict when comparing the amount of space devoted to exposition and description; the evidence for this can also be taken from the amount devoted to the narration of the listed literary terms. From the four main characters (Pearl, Hester, Dimmesdale, and Chillingworth), each person is symbolically described to an extent where the reader can make accurate assumptions over the story’s overall meaning; this can be done just by perceiving the sheer description of the character and their developments throughout the plot. Hester’s role along with her daughter Pearl, Dimmesdale, and Chillingworth is vital in the analysis of the Hawthorne’s personal view on Puritan Condemnation.
Nathaniel Hawthorne was an American author who used his writings to express his dark, gloomy outlook on life (the scarlet letter). When he wrote, he focused on the limitations and potential destructiveness of the human spirit, rather than on its possibilities (the scarlet letter). He used his outlook on life to write his most popular novel, The Scarlet Letter. In this book he wanted to show that the Puritans were not a peaceful group like people assumed (the scarlet letter). Hawthorne wrote The Scarlet Letter in the late 1840s to depict what was happening in his life and to satisfy his need for money (the scarlet letter); as a result most literary critics praised
Nathaniel Hawthorne is an American writer, known for his popular novel, The Scarlet Letter, and his various short stories. Much of his writings are categorized in the dark romanticism genre and centered in the Puritan New England society. His rhetorical style consists mainly of the incorporation of various rhetorical terms, notably imagery and symbolism, and morality, in order to teach the audience a lesson. Hawthorne also uses a similar dark and mysterious tone throughout his novels and short stories, yet it causes the reader to think out of the box. He leaves many of his stories open to interpretation, to let his readers come up with their own conclusions.
At first, the scarlet letter meant "Adulteress" and was a sign of scorn. It was a brand used for easy identification of an untrustworthy criminal. But as time progressed, and the initial shock of such actions as adultery subsided, the townspeople, especially the women, took note of the fact that Hester had accepted the responsibility of her actions by sewing the scarlet letter herself. They also observed that she did so with unmatched precision. Eventually this made them yearn for needlepoint talent like she possessed. They began relying on her to sew exquisite patterns for them, gradually inviting her back in their society. By wearing the scarlet letter proudly, Hester had eventually changed the meaning of the "A" from "Adulteress" to "Able." The townspeople saw Hester for her inner beauty, not for the scarlet letter forever branded onto her bosom. They realized the sacrifice and pain that she went through to regain their trust and respect. Gradually, throughout the novel the scarlet letter becomes an article of pride, and Hester a woman deserving respect.
The feeling of exasperating love defies the health of the mind and body through a vital time in literature. Nathaniel Hawthorne accomplishes this through the book, “The Scarlet Letter”. He emphasizes puritanic views in his writing as well as romanticism through four different characters: Hester Prynne, Roger Chillingworth, Arthur Dimmesdale, and Pearl. The basis of the story was that Hester Prynne was being punished and shamed for her sin of adultery with Arthur Dimmesdale in proof of the baby girl named Pearl, leaving Hester to overtake this ever longing shame for seven years. The relationship between all of these characters of “The Scarlet Letter” exhibits the period of romanticism in American literature and the significance that enhanced the many writings of other authors of this time.
Imagine a world where justice and punishment go hand in hand, were punishments for even the most minute crimes and sins are brutally punished. This is the reality of early Puritan societies. Puritanism, began in the late 16th century to “purify” the Church of England. Puritanism was heavily founded on the theology of Calvinism, the idea that God has preordained a certain number of elect which will realize that they are a member of the elect through a process referred to as the enlightenment. Puritanism ultimately failed in their goal of purifying the Church of England which led to their separation and journey to the newly discovered Americas to create their own colonies.
How has my wearing my own scarlet letter effected me? I believe that my scarlet letter has affected me for the better, even though it didn’t cause me much shame when I wore it on thursday. In that activity we were supposed to see how life would’ve been for Hester Pyrene when she wore the scarlet letter. To see what it was like for hester we were asked created our own letter, so the letter I chose to describe myself was “I” because I see my greatest shame as being insecure and becoming irritable.
“The symbol has the capacity to convey impressions, but the importance of the social context is prominent in interpreting this impression.” (Carrez). Hester committed adultery and had to wear the letter “A” as her punishment. Having her obey the punishment, she takes it into her own hands and uses the ability to make the best of it. By giving to those who are in need and those we don't desire if she is still cares and helps them out, by that she is considered an angel. The living persona of Pearl is her being the sin that caused many issues to Hester but is still a blessings to her. In the book the,Scarlet Letter,by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the ¨A¨ symbolizes adultery, ability, angel,and the living persona of the letter.
A lot of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s writings have to do with Puritans and their American past. He had deep bonds with his ancestors and he used those bonds to create a story that shined a light on their strengths and weaknesses. The Scarlet Letter portrays this to the fullest extent. The Puritans arrived in Massachusetts in the 1630s led by John Winthrop, whose death is written in The Scarlet Letter. They were known for being intolerant of new inventions and changing lifestyles. Hawthorne uses power-hungry, authoritarian Puritans as the example for a society in general (The Scarlet Letter). The Scarlet Letter allows him to show the human soul when it is under intense, public pressure. Hawthorne does an amazing job of intertwining American issues in his stories. His tenacity and openness has secured his place on the literary platform for many years to come