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scarlet letter


            The Scarlet Letter By: Nathaniel Hawthorne Period 4 Adv. English 11 November 2, 1999 The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorn begins by dealing with Hester Prynne's crime and sentence. She shows herself to be a proud woman in how she embroiders her bright red "A" with golden thread to be displayed to her community. She is a skilled seamstress and she doesn't seem, despite her disgrace, to be afraid to show that about herself. When she walked down the street from the prison to the scaffold, the narrator talks about her realization of how foolish and cowardly she would be if she were to try to hide her mark with the product of her sin, her baby girl. She carries off her initial sentence of being showcased on the scaffold with as much dignity as possible for anyone in such a situation. The reactions of the people were interesting to me; their strong feelings against Hester being permitted to live startled me. I realized what a sort of culture and religion ruled in those times. Also, I couldn't quite imagine being in Hester's position with the kind of disgrace she was faced with. The narrator describes Hester as totally losing her womanly appeal and beauty over the seven years of condemnation. Roger Chillingworth confused me greatly until near the conclusion of the book. When he visited Hester I was surprised that he wanted to treat her instead of trying to harm her, but then later realized his motives. He wanted no one in the community to learn that there was any relationship between Hester and himself at all; harming her would have raised suspicions. This was vital to his plan of revenge on Mr. Dimmesdale. At first I thought that Chillingworth might have tried to seek revenge against Hester, but then came to the conclusion that he viewed her public disgrace as more punishment than he could ever have managed. Chillingworth's revenge was very clever. Everyone in the town knew and respected him and this helped him gain "friendship" with Dimmesdale.


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