The Scarlet Letter Theme Essay

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Themes are very apparent and are found in practically every work of literature. There are many different types of themes which are used to express what a work is about, and help the reader create a better understanding of what the story is telling. These themes are exhibited by the many different characters found in the Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, and assist the reader into going more in depth into the personal characteristics and inner-workings of each individual character, as they each show signs of one or more of the three main themes of the novel. The themes alienation, appearance versus reality, and breaking society’s rules are common in different literary works, but are extremely apparent in The Scarlet Letter.
Being isolated,
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Pearl is outcasted by her fellow child, and is treated like some sort of monster, solely because she was born to daughter of a sinner. Pearl, however, doesn’t allow her alienation bother her, as to her it is just her life. Pearl has never known a life outside of an outsider, and will probably only know it. Hester is the most alienated throughout the entirety of the novel. Unlike Pearl, though, she brought her punishment upon herself. Sure, Puritan society was known to be cruel and unfair because of their almost extremist Christian background, but Hester still decided to cheat on her wedded husband, and with a minister no less. Hester was treated poorly, and like a complete outcast. She was forced to wear a scarlet letter “A” on her bosom as a symbol of her sin, and was made stand in town where all could see, so that they may shame her and make her rethink her devilish actions. “...as if her heart had been flung in the street for them all to spurn and trample upon.” (Hawthorne 53). This punishment tore her apart, but she did her best to not allow her pain to show through. Eventually, the townspeople applauded her ability to stay as strong as possible, and eventually turned her letter of adultery to a letter of able. Though not nearly as

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