Natural Law In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

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The concept of natural law allows one to express yourself however you please in society because you have the right to. In The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the entity of two different laws of nature, Puritan and natural are represented by Hester’s instinct to follow the laws of nature rather than the laws of the Puritans and their society, to earn her own contentment. A woman named Hester has a baby with someone who is not her husband, gets locked up, put in jail and is forced to wear a Scarlet letter “A” on her chest for the rest of her life to due harsh Puritan punishment. Puritan law was guided and focused on strictness and punishment to the people of their society whereas natural law was a concept that centered around how it was acceptable to mess up because we are humans and not perfect. …show more content…
The society demanded conformity due to protecting their religion. The Puritans and their harsh ways despised individualism and favored in a utopian society. Hester refuses to conform to Puritanism and suffers the consequences by being shunned and embarrassed in the eyes of the public. Puritan law revolves around punishment; therefore, when Hester was put in jail for her wrongdoings, she was completely looked down upon. She was treated terribly and even more because she declined to conform to the Puritan ways of living. Hester attempts to not make the worst of it, “Here, she said to herself, had been the scene of her guilt, and here should be the scene of her earthly punishment; and so, perchance, the torture of her daily shame would at length purge her soul, and work out another purity than that which she had lost; more saint-like, because the result of martyrdom.” (58) Hester wanted to gain back her pureness. She believed that she could by living everyday in her shame to remind herself of her sins. The Puritans held a power that could easily take one away from society to make the worst

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