Examples Of Puritan Society In The Scarlet Letter

Good Essays
Register to read the introduction… It is assumed that you need only yourself, and therefore there was no need for a "shoulder to cry on." It would be unthinkable for Hester and Dimmesdale to comfort each other, not only because of Hester's sin, but because of the stations in life that each of them held. In the forest, these cares are thrown away. "Be thou strong for me…Advise me what to do" (180). Dimmesdale pleads with Hester to help him. He admits that he cannot deal with this suffering by himself. With this plea, there is a role reversal between him and Hester. He is no longer holding onto the belief that he is above Hester. He is admitting that Hester is an equal to him. This is unheard of in the socially oriented Puritan society. A parishioner could never be above their pastor. A pastor would never go to one of his parishioners for help. Hester assumes a new position of power and gives Dimmesdale …show more content…
When he replies "there is not the strength or courage left me to venture into the wide, strange, difficult world, alone!" (182), Hester replies that he would not have to go alone for she would go with him! "Thou shalt not go alone" (182). No other place than in the forest could such plans to run away be discussed between the two of them. Only in the forest could a man of such high regard in the community share his innermost thoughts to a woman who had been outcast by society. Only in the forest could such an event take place.
The forest brings out the natural appearance and natural personality of Hester. A new person is revealed as Hester takes off her cap and lets down her hair. Once again the reader can view the true Hester, who had been hidden by the shame of the scarlet letter. The Hester that is revealed in the forest is the same woman that was seen in the beginning of the novel. She once again became the beautiful, attractive person who is not afraid to show her hair and to display her beauty. The sunlight that once seemed to run away from her, now sought her

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    During Hester and Dimmesdale’s meeting in the forest, Hester finally regains her femininity that her society oppressed. Hester’s renewal of beauty is characterized by the letting down of her hair and the removal of the scarlet letter, paralleling with the beauty and vivacity of the forest. By taking off her scarlet letter, Hester finally realizes the freedom that her society had taken away from her. The forest responds to Hester as she regains her beauty, as the sunlight floods into the private space: “Such was the sympathy of Nature— that wild, heathen Nature of the forest, never subjugated by human law“ (183). The forest becomes antithetical to the Puritan ideals, allowing Hester to be a free individual within the confines of the restricted Puritanical society.…

    • 1098 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    According to the Puritans, emotions are inferior to reason and nature provides a playing field for the devil. Due to the fear of the Black Man and mistrust of emotions, the Puritans avoid the forests entirely—locating themselves on the outskirts of the forest. The Puritan’s disapproval of nature and the unknown makes the forest a place free from the judgments and regulations of the community. The narrator reveals this freedom as it mentions how the “wild, heathen Nature of the forest, never subjugated by human law, nor illumined by higher truth” (Hawthorne 183) Therefore, this liberation found in the forest allows Hester to relieve herself of the ignominy that the community imposed on her by removing the scarlet letter and recovering all the aspects that define her as an individual. The freedom she possesses is clear as the text states, “The burden of shame and anguish departed from her spirit .…

    • 1117 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Surrender all your issues and problems to God believing he can fix them. You have to realize that you are incomplete and broken without him. As a single, you should never believe another single is capable of completing you. This line of thinking can run you the risk of great disappointment in the end. Even if you think a person could be your soul mate, it is not their job to make you whole or complete.…

    • 2133 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Charity responds to the stringency of societal expectations with a foolhardy affair with an individual she knew little of. She so desperately craves freedom that she fails to acknowledge the potential hazards to result from her actions. While Charity copes with her situation, she comprehends the reality of the Mountain. As she suspects in earlier chapters, society restrains individuals to virtually no extent in the Mountain. After seeing her mother, Charity understands that she received opportunities from living in North Dormer that would have been wholly unavailable to her otherwise.…

    • 1138 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Young Goodman Brown is truly confident that he will never be influenced by the devil until his trust is challenged through multiple events in the forest. Joan D. Winslow, the profound author of “The Stranger Within: Two Stories by Oates and Hawthorne,” uncovers the truth by noting, “He awakens and affirms Brown’s doubt of others and his belief that he is irrevocably committed to evil.” In other words, the evil Mr. Brown encounters results in the loss of trust in his marriage because he learns evil is in everyone including his angelic wife. This dark truth causes Mr. Brown to view his surroundings negatively and leaves him at a point of no return. Alexis and Ronnie persevere through their marriage by accepting each other’s flaws. The narrator discloses this by saying, “‘We should stay together.…

    • 1029 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    While Nature is feared by the majority of members in the Puritan society, for it is unknown and uncontrollable to them, Pearl is unafraid due to the similarities between Nature and herself. Pearl was born out of wedlock, which makes her an outsider to society, unable to fit into Puritanism and all of its definitions of worthiness and purity. Nature is also unable to be controlled by the Puritans, creating a stronger connection with Pearl. The “mother-forest, and these wild things which it [nourishes], all [recognizes] a kindred wildness in the human child” and welcomes her because she is innocent, despite what others believe (195). Having been isolated from the town since birth, Pearl grew up uncorrupted by the Puritans and their strict religious beliefs.…

    • 1241 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    The forest is were Goodman goes with all his faith and comes out with not any faith. Goodman is curious to find out the “temptation” in the forest spikes the ability to have an innocent view on life. “Faith keep me back a while.” (318) He is really faithful to his own beliefs and even his conscious is telling him to not go towards the forest because he is going to end with a heart in pieces. By looking at many things that he is not supposed to. The forest brings Goodman curiosity about his childhood, culture, and even the good religious beliefs he was thought.…

    • 728 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Hawthorne and Walker make their protagonists more real to the reader by having them struggle with moral issues everyday people can encounter. Both characters begin their respective stories with a narrow perspective of the people around them. In “Young Goodman Brown”, Goodman Brown is convinced that everyone around him is morally righteous. When travelling into the forest in which the demonic gathering takes place, Hawthorne writes, “It was all as lonely as could be; and there is this peculiarity in such a solitude, that the traveller knows not who may be concealed by the innumerable trunks and the thick boughs overhead; so that, with lonely footsteps, he may yet be passing through an unseen multitude,” (Kennedy 420). This implies Goodman Brown perceived himself as alone in the forest when in fact, he just could not see the others who were hidden in the trees.…

    • 1644 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    This un-puritan characteristic shows Reverend cares less of his relationship with God and being a common Christian man, and more of his relationship with the people of Salem Village. Parris saw the girls in the woods but chooses to keep such information a secret so his name cannot be directly associated. Parris speaking to Abigail, “Now look you, child, your punishment will come in its time. But if you trafficked with spirits in the forest I must know it now, for surely my enemies will, and they will ruin me with it,” (138; 75-8). Samuel can deal with Abigail’s crimes, but the idea of his enemies finding out, ruining his status more, seems to be unbearable for this Priest.…

    • 1094 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    There are no adaptations in the Puritan society, if anything strays from the normal it is ostracized or even hated by the community. The Puritans think that if there is no variety in society that nothing can come out of nowhere are surprised them, which is inevitable in any circumstance. The Puritans as a society aren’t willing to accept change,…

    • 1131 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays