Turning weakness into strength in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne

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Turning weakness into strength in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne

While Hawthorne does not give a great deal of information about her life before the book opens, he does show her remarkable character, revealed through her public humiliation and subsequent, isolated life in Puritan society.

Her inner strength, her defiance of convention, her honesty, and her compassion may have been in her character all along, but the scarlet letter brings them to our attention.

She is, in the end, a survivor. Hester is physically described in the first scaffold scene as a tall young woman with a "figure of perfect elegance on a large scale.

In fact, so physically stunning is she that "her beauty shone out, and made a halo of the misfortune and ignominy in which she was enveloped. Her beautiful hair is hidden under her cap, her beauty and warmth are gone, buried under the burden of the elaborate scarlet letter on her bosom. When she removes the letter and takes off her cap in Chapter 13, she once again becomes the radiant beauty of seven years earlier.

Symbolically, when Hester removes the letter and takes off the cap, she is, in effect, removing the harsh, stark, unbending Puritan social and moral structure. Hester is only to have a brief respite, however, because Pearl angrily demands she resume wearing the scarlet A. With the scarlet letter and her hair back in place, "her beauty, the warmth and richness of her womanhood, departed, like fading sunshine; and a gray shadow seemed to fall across her.

What we know about Hester from the days prior to her punishment is that she came from a "genteel but impoverished English family" of notable lineage. She married the much older Roger Chillingworth, who spent long hours over his books and experiments; yet she convinced herself that she was happy.

When they left Amsterdam for the New World, he sent her ahead, but he was reportedly lost at sea, leaving Hester alone among the Puritans of Boston. Officially, she is a widow. While not a Puritan herself, Hester looks to Arthur Dimmesdale for comfort and spiritual guidance.

Somewhere during this period of time, their solace becomes passion and results in the birth of Pearl.

Turning weakness into strength in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne

The reader first meets the incredibly strong Hester on the scaffold with Pearl in her arms, beginning her punishment. On the scaffold, she displays a sense of irony and contempt. The irony is present in the elaborate needlework of the scarlet letter.

The first description of Hester notes her "natural dignity and force of character" and mentions specifically the haughty smile and strong glance that reveal no self-consciousness of her plight. While she might be feeling agony as if "her heart had been flung into the street for them all to spurn and trample upon," her face reveals no such thought, and her demeanor is described as "haughty.

In this first scene, Dimmesdale implores her to name the father of the baby and her penance may be lightened. Despite her lonely existence, Hester somehow finds an inner strength to defy both the townspeople and the local government. This defiance becomes stronger and will carry her through later interviews with both Chillingworth and Governor Bellingham.

When the governor determines to take Pearl away from her, Hester says, "God gave me the child! He gave her in requital of all things else, which he had taken from me. Ye shall not take her! I will die first!

I will not give her up! Hester defies Chillingworth when he demands to know the name of her lover. In Chapter 4, when he interviews her in the jail, she firmly says, "Ask me not! That thou shalt never know! The minister calls on her to give him strength to overcome his indecisiveness twice in the forest and again as he faces his confession on Election Day.

What is the source of this strength? As she walks out on the scaffold at the beginning of the novel, Hester determines that she must "sustain and carry" her burden forward "by the ordinary resources of her nature, or sink with it.

She could no longer borrow from the future to help her through the present. Yet she continues to lack adult companionship throughout her life.

She has nothing but her strength of spirit to sustain her.

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the Black Man lurks within Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale’s soul. Dimmesdale alternates between good and evil, but eventually the strength of evil begins to overcome him. At first, only being a hypocrite but then helping Hester gain Pearl’s custody, but then turning thoughts of evil into legitimate actions. Essay on The Evolution of Hester in Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter - The Scarlet Letter – The Evolution of Hester The novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne was an objective description of the life of Hester Prynne, an adultress. Similarly, in The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne documents the maturation of two lovers, Hester Prynne and Arthur Dimmesdale, following the moment of passion that leads them to sin, the undeniable force of affection which continually pulls them together, and finally the death of one lover.

She openly acknowledges her sin. In Chapter 17, she explains to Dimmesdale that she has been honest in all things except in disclosing his part in her pregnancy. I felt no love, nor feigned any. This life of public repentance, although bitter and difficult, helps her retain her sanity while Dimmesdale seems to be losing his.

Finally, Hester becomes an angel of mercy who eventually lives out her life as a figure of compassion in the community.In The Scarlet Letter, those two branches of the government are represented by Mr.

Roger Wilson (Church) and Governor Bellingham (State). The rules governing the Puritans came from the Bible, a source of spiritual and ethical standards.

Roger Chillingworth, unlike Hester and Dimmesdale, is a flat character. While he develops from a kind scholar into an obsessed fiend, he is less of a character The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne. BUY SHARE.

Turning weakness into strength in the scarlet letter by nathaniel hawthorne

BUY! Home; Literature Notes; The Scarlet Letter; is a flat character. While he develops from a kind scholar into an obsessed. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne Chapter “The Revelation of the Scarlet Letter” with the scarlet letter still burning on her breast!

But he fought back the bodily weakness—and, still more, the faintness of heart—that was . The character Pearl of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter acts as a symbol and is not rendered human until the final chapter of the novel as she kisses the lips of her father and "a spell.

Start studying Amcult Quotes Section. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. The whole gang of sailors, likewise, observing the press of spectators, and learning the purport of the scarlet letter, came and thrust their .

Roger Chillingworth