Realism And Romanticism In The Scarlet Letter By Nathaniel Hawthorne

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“No one can be a poet and a book-keeper at the same time” (Hawthorne qtd. In Telgen 307). Nathaniel Hawthorne was born on Independence day of 1804 in Salem Massachusetts. Salem was both well known and an abominable city. (Neilson 276). At a young age, Hawthorne had an accident, one of his foot was injured for three years. While injured, he spent time comprehending literary classics. The injury sparked Hawthorne’s interest in literature (Telgen 307). Hawthorne worked for his uncle as a book-keeper at the Manning stage coach lines (Swisher 15). Nathaniel studied Puritan past. He thought deeply about the Puritans way of life and thinking of the colony in New England ( 15). The past of Puritan’s way of life greatly influenced Hawthorne’s writing of The Scarlet Letter. John Hathorne, one of the judge from the infamous Salem Witch Trials was the great-great-grandfather of Nathaniel Hawthorne. “When Hawthorne was four years old, his father died from yellow fever on a voyage to the Caribbean” (Swisher 12). When Hawthorne was nine, he …show more content…
American Romantic writers show themes of individualism, self-realization, and idealism (Swisher 28). Romantic writers focused on the past, stressed imagination and conveyed a sense of optimism (28). “Hawthorne incorporated Romanticism in The Scarlet Letter through his use of mysterious character and a historical setting” (29). He used the mystery of mistress Hibbins’s supernatural knowledge and her relation with the Black Man in the forest (29). The Scarlet letter by Hawthorne was not as optimistic as other Romantic writers because of his use of guilt from the past of Puritans. He wants us to be aware of the dark side of human nature (29). Most of Hawthorne’s work shows that sin affects a person’s mind, heart, and that person concept of moral right and wrong. The way each major characters sees sin may or may not different from society’s

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