Form Of Symbolism In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

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The story 'The Scarlet Letter ' if filled to the brim with symbolism, both in the form of the letter 'A ' itself and the way people see it and the people themselves. The letter, the main form of symbolism has many different meanings varying from the living embodiment found in Hester 's daughter to the version where it was 'burned ' into Arthur 's flesh, to the different ways that it is viewed while Hester wears it over the years. symbol, or symbolism, is generally a concrete (physical) object that represents something else, and idea or message. These symbols range from the most simple substitution of one thing for another to a more complex symbol like that of Moby Dick. An allegory, however, is when a character, object, or event is used to give some universal lesson. A scaffold or prie-dieu could be used as a symbol of sin or the need to repent from something. In 'The Scarlet Letter ' Hawthorne presents the perfect set for symbolism because he chose a people, the puritans, who …show more content…
She is the public sinner who demonstrates the effect of punishment and its effect on human nature 's sensitivity. She is the 'fallen woman ', the culprit who deserves her punishment for the immoral action she took part in, and struggles with the idea behind the letter 's symbolism in the same manner as the people around her struggle with keeping their actions 'moral '. The irony in this is that the puritan people see her as a symbol of sin, as the immoral woman she has proved to be, and in doing so reduce her to a dull, gray, lifeless woman, who 's feelings and vitality is oppressed. However, over her seven years of punishment the meaning, for her, of the letter changes. In chapter 18, when she meets with Dimmesdale in the forest, Hawthorne states, "The tendency of her fate and fortunes had been to set her free. The scarlet letter was her passport into regions where other women dared not

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