Summary Of Feminism In The Scarlet Letter

1581 Words 7 Pages
Seth Pyrtle
Almack
English 4 AP
2 October, 2014

Literary Theory: Feminism

Feminism is in our culture whether it should be relevant or not. Elements of all branches of feminism are not only in our everyday culture in the mainstream media, social media, and even our classic literature that we read as insight to what our society was like beforehand. This describes two branches of feminism and they relate to the classic novel The Scarlet Letter. The branches that will be talked about are French feminism and Radical feminism. The idea of feminism bloomed around the enlightenment era but is different than how we think of feminism overall today. It was a view that consisted of women and men being exact equals and it was an idea that was actually
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The Scarlet Letter actually has traces of both these branches and how feminism takes a role in how this story plays out. The Scarlet Letter portrays Hester Prynne, a young woman from Britain that is sent to settle in a puritan society in America while her husband, Roger Prynne, finishes unsettled business in Britain. Hester is seen leaving a jail in the American puritan settlement holding her daughter Pearl in her arms. Hester has an “A” stitched in gold and scarlet on her chest. People begin to point out that she was in trouble for adultery. The story mainly shows Hester’s trials and how she is still able to be a good person and do good things even with the town thinking she is a …show more content…
However, knowing the somewhat patriarchal society they had back then, the priest may have been booted from being a priest but there’s no way that he’d be in the same trouble has Hester. There are several reasons why this priest would not have received the same punishment as Hester. Not only being a male, he is also a male in a higher up position than most of the citizens in the puritan society. Being a male and also a male in society he probably would have retained a social status somewhat in the community. This is just something that was a part of life. Women weren’t thought of as equal to men. Men were stronger and were the only ones able to work and have jobs, or so thought by the mass of the community (which also consisted of mostly men.) Men in this story definitely play a patriarchal role over the society but it is evident by the end that of the story that Hester is able to work past the judgements of others and work through the highly religious society and still do work for the people that have judged her while other men receive no punishment or very slight ones if they do receive them because there is always an excuse for the men of that

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