Narrative Of The Captivity And Redemption Of Roger Prynne Analysis

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Throughout the 1800s historical novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, ambiguity is significant. Though many critics and readers will firmly conclude that Roger Chillingworth is a villain, Bethany Reid opposes this typical view. In her critical essay, “Narrative of the Captivity and Redemption of Roger Prynne: Rereading The Scarlet Letter” (Fall 2001), she analyzes of the relationship between Roger Prynne and Nathaniel Hawthorne’s ‘traumatic’ familial history that allows for a sympathetic outlook on Roger. The author’s purpose is to illustrate the misperceptions of Roger Prynne’s character and establish his fatherly role in Pearl Prynne’s life. Reid supports her claim by including details about Hawthorne’s father in order to juxtapose the actions of the ship captain and Roger, repeatedly mentioning the Hawthorne’s parental deprivation and ambivalence which creates the foundation for Roger and …show more content…
Aside from Hester’s biased perspective through which the story is told, Reid expands on both the actual interpretation of Roger Chillingworth and his unspoken role in Pearl’s duplicit father-complex and upbringing. Reid supports her claim by including detailed explanations such as refuting other counterarguments with details such as the entailment of Hester’s biased viewpoint, and evidence while also repeatedly mentioning the Hawthorne’s parental deprivation and ambivalence. Reid successfully illustrates the misperceptions of Roger Prynne’s character and establish his fatherly role in Pearl Prynne’s life in order to accurately understand the transition of Pearl from a wild ‘witch-baby’ to a lady heiress and to emphasize the typical bias of perspectives through a certain

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