Symbolism Of Nathaniel Hawthorne 's ' The Scarlet Letter '

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Professor Singhbaba Gbemisola Adedeji English 102 Rough draft Topic: Symbolism of the Scarlet letter “A”

In The Scarlet letter the author Nathaniel Hawthorne illustrates the use of symbolism in the book, especially the scarlet letter “A.” Symbolism is defined as a figure of speech used for an object, or a word to represent something else in literature. The Scarlet letter “A” had a change of meaning throughout the novel. In the inception of the book it is known as a symbol of Adultery. As the book continues the scarlet letter is looked at differently on the main character Hester Prynne’s chest from Adultery to Able. The scarlet letter “A” is being described as very gorgeous “On the breast of Hester’s gown, in fine red cloth, surrounded with an elaborate embroidery and fantastic flourishes of gold thread, appeared the letter A”(50). Hawthorne described the Scarlet letter as so attractively done, and with a lot richness and attractiveness, and it had all the result of a last and decent decoration to the clothing which Hester wore, but was far from what was permitted by the restrictive protocols of the puritan society. In the beginning of the book, the letter is understood as a symbol of punishment and sin for Hester Prynne while the townspeople mainly the women believed Hester should have had the letter

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