The Importance Of Education In The Puritan Society

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he harshness of the Puritan religion is captured in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. This novel’s protagonist, Hester Prynne, commits adultery in New England during the colonial times. She gives birth to an illegitimate child, Pearl, with Reverend Dimmesdale. Punished with a scarlet letter “A” that she wears on her breast, she is an outcast to society. This leaves her lonely; her only companion is her Pearl. Hester is skilled with uniquely embroidering elaborate designs; thus she supports herself and Pearl through her needlework. Pearl is often described as impish throughout the novel, disobeying the standard expectations of children. The Puritans government threatens to take away Pearl from Hester because they think Hester unfit to teach Pearl correctly. In comparison to Hawthorne’s view of a strict education system for Puritans, the Puritan community had a very effective education system. The Puritans’ strong and strict view on religion greatly influenced education in Colonial America. The Puritans believed that education was an important way to spread their religion. Rachelle Friedmann wrote a reference article summarizing Puritan culture, including their views on education and religion. In the “Puritans and Education” section, Friedmann noted the importance of education as an important religious principle, causing ‘literacy rates for both New England men and women were higher than in other regions of colonial America.” The Puritans were aware providing
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