An analysis of the theme of suffering and torment in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne

During one of these vigils, Dimmesdale seizes on an idea for what he believes may be a remedy to his pain. As a result, the Puritans maintained strict watch over themselves and their fellow townspeople, and sins such as adultery were punishable by death. Read a translation of Chapter The more he suffers, the better his sermons become.

The Scarlet Letter Summary

We are meant to see that her transgressions are simply more extreme versions of the evils done by men like her brother and Reverend Wilson. Nevertheless, Hawthorne states in Chapter 20, "No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself, and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be true.

He cannot stand alone to confess. Where Puritanism is merciless and rigid, nature is forgiving and flexible. Since God created the soul and infused it in the human body, salvation is predestined. As a sinner, he is weakened to temptation.

In the long run, Dimmesdale has not the strength of Hester Prynne or her honesty. On the way home, he sees how far his defenses have been breached by evil. Analysis This chapter and the previous one give an in-depth description of a heart "of human frailty and sorrow. Pearl is too young to understand sex, adultery, or shame, but she is not blind, and she has intuitively understood the link between Hester and Dimmesdale for some time.

Without treatment, this wound has become infected.

The Scarlet Letter

Dimmesdale laughs aloud and is answered by a laugh from Pearl, whose presence he had not noticed. Although the novel is set in a rigid Puritanical society, many of its themes still resonate today. In this scene, however, Hester is the only other person who knows this, and Pearl speaks to her father, unaware of his true identity.

The Scarlet Letter eNotes Lesson Plan

The town seeks to use Hester as an example to frighten any other would-be nonconformists from breaking the strict moral rules of Puritanism.

Pearl has been playing in the tide pools down on the beach. Dimmesdale asks if she intends to mock him, and she replies that she is punishing him for his refusal to stand in public with her and her mother.

In the scene in which Hester is released from prison, the narrator describes the town police official as representing the "whole dismal severity of the Puritanical code of law," which fused religion with law. They proceed to discuss the meaning of the scarlet letter.

Although the storyline may seem simplistic, the depth and complexity of the major characters drive the plot; over time, Arthur, Hester, Roger, and Pearl change in profound ways.

His suffering has given him sympathies that cause him to understand the sins of others, which results in eloquent and moving sermons. Puritan society demanded conformity because it considered any breach of that conformity a threat to its security and its religion.

She wishes Chillingworth would exact his revenge on her instead of Dimmesdale. She realizes the child is too young to know the truth and decides not to explain the significance of the letter to her. The Reverend delivers a moving sermon that week, following which he reveals the scarlet letter on his chest.

She realizes that, although it is a sin to do so, she hates her husband. The main components of each plan are the following: In the forest scene, Dimmesdale evidently realizes that he is human and should ask forgiveness and do penance openly. If she once thought she was happy with him, it was only self-delusion.

At the same time, the symbol of human evil, Chillingworth, appears more evil than ever in this chapter. He beats himself with a bloody whip and keeps frequent all-night vigils during which his mind is plagued by frightening visions.

His congregation adores him and his parishioners seek his advice. While on the scaffold, Hester sees her husband, Mr.The Scarlet Letter Essay In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, the underlying theme of self-reliance is evident in all four main characters at some point throughout the novel.

The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne. BUY SHARE. BUY! Home; Literature Notes; The Scarlet Letter; Arthur Dimmesdale Character Analysis Arthur Dimmesdale and his agonized suffering is the direct result of his inability to disclose his sin.

Of the four major characters in this novel, which investigates the nature of evil and sin and is. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s romantic tale of sin, punishment, and redemption, The Scarlet Letter was destined to become an American classic when it was published in ; it has endured for over A summary of Chapters 15–16 in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter.

Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of The Scarlet Letter and what it means.

Analysis—Chapters 15–the definition of which is an important theme in this book. Hester comes to a realization that her sins have resulted partially. The Scarlet Letter study guide contains a biography of Nathaniel Hawthorne, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.

Video: Dimmesdale Quotes from The Scarlet Letter: Examples & Analysis This lesson is a collection of quotes from the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale in Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel 'The Scarlet Letter'.

An analysis of the theme of suffering and torment in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne
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