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The Scarlet Letter Essay

June 4th, 2009 No comments

The Puritans of Boston make a victim of Hester Prynne in The Scarlet Letter for her sin of adultery by putting her in jail, by publicly condemning her, by forcing her to wear a scarlet on her bosom for the rest of her life, and by out casting her from society.

Hester Prynne’s crime of adultery with Arthur Dimmesdale, the town reverend, depicts a serious crime, worthy of being put in jail, especially in the 1770s, when the people of Massachusetts depicted a very pious group of Puritans. It was a time when you could be punished for committing a minor sin, like not attending church on a Sunday. In Hester’s case, her husband fails to join her in Boston after migrating from Europe and she begins to engage in sexual relations with Reverend Dimmesdale. The author of the book, Nathaniel Hawthorne, commences the book to her first punishment, Hester serving a jail sentence (page 35). If the community wasn–Ęt Puritan, Hester would have been looked down upon; however, she would not have been subjected to punishments worse than her crime. Read more…