The Consequences Of Shame In The Scarlet Letter

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Shame is a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior. The behavior that causes someone to feel shame can either be made by a major on minor mistake. For hundreds of years people have felt the weight of shame and the consequences that follow it. In the contemporary novel: Speak and in the classic novel: The Scarlet Letter this in one of the main issues that the main characters have to go through and overcome. In the contemporary novel: Speak Melinda Sordino has had a great life. She has amazing parents, a great group of friends, and is ready to finally be in high school. That is until she goes to an end-of-summer party, where she experiences a traumatic event that causes her to call …show more content…
When someone commits this crime they are forced to wear a scarlet, gold embroidered patch of cloth in the shape of an “A”, also referred to as the scarlet letter. Now that Hester has committed this crime she is no longer looked at the same way. Now being given her punishment Hester sees someone in the crowd she did not expect to see. She sees her husband, who she has not seen since coming to the United States. He is now studying medicine and has changed his name to Roger Chillingworth. In the crowd, Hester hears him angrily yelling that the father of her child should also be punished, and vows to be the one that finds him. The townspeople and town fathers now want to know that one question: “Who is the father of your child?” Hester refuses to tell them, but one town father won 't give up. His name in Arthur Dimmesdale and he is also the minster of her church. Mr. Dimmesdale has always been nice to Hester and her daughter Pearl, but throughout the years she has noticed his health began to fail. The townspeople think that it would be best if the new physician, Mr. Chillingworth, go and live with Mr. Dimmesdale until he got better. Mr. Chillingworth thinks that Mr. Dimmesdale’s illness is brought by an unconfessed guilt. Mr. Chillingworth thinks he may know what he is guilty of, but he just needs to find a way to get Mr. Dimmesdale to speak the …show more content…
The definition of outcast is a person who has been rejected by society or a social group. This definition most definitely describes Melinda and Hester, and their standing in the social society. Not only is Hester an outcast, but so is Mr. Dimmesdale. Since Melinda and Mr. Dimmesdale are both outcasts in the social setting, they both like to find places to hide away. One place they have in common is they like to go into a closet, which are almost identical. In The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, the author of the book, described Mr. Dimmesdale’s closet as “in Mr. Dimmesdale’s secret closet, under lock and key, there was a bloody scourge… He kept vigils, likewise, night after night, sometimes in utter darkness; sometimes with a glimmering lamp; and sometimes, viewing his own face in a looking-glass, by the most powerful light which he could throw upon it” (1). In Speak, Laurie Halse Anderson, the author of the book, described Melinda’s closet as "The back wall has built-in shelves filled with dusty textbooks and a few bottles of bleach. A stained armchair and an old fashioned desk peek from behind a collection of mops and brooms. A cracked mirror tilts over a sink littered with dead roaches crocheted together with cobwebs...This closet is abandoned-it has no purpose, no name. It is the perfect place for me." (2). Their closets are almost identical with the objects they fill them with. All of these

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