Analysis of The Scarlet Letter

Essay by sophialeeHigh School, 12th gradeA-, February 2004

download word file, 18 pages 4.8


The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a world-wide famous novel with fascinating plot and typical characters. Since its publication it has remained a strong appeal to the readers who are interested in literature. The theme and characters of the romance have long been a matter of dispute. In the second part of my paper ( the first part is introduction ), by contrasting diverse opinions of different critics, I analyze the plot and the main characters of the book, especially the female protagonist-Hester Prynne. The third part of my paper focuses on the form and content of the book, which are closely correlated with each other and thus constitute a distinct feature of the book. Another topic concerning the book which is worthy of discussion is the rhetorical devices. In the course of story-composing, Hawthorne adopts many allusions and references to English history and New England past. Taking Hester Prynne as the main object of discussion, I expound in the fourth part of my paper the associations between her and the historical figures William Prynne and Ann Huchinson, as well as the religious figure Virgin Mary.

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is essentially a story of sin, punishment, and hypocrisy. In the marvelous romance. Hawthorne deals with the conflicts between young women and the rigid laws of seventeenth-century Puritan society in Massachusetts. One who is familiar with American Literature may easily find that by 1850 such works of fiction were numerous enough to form a novelistic genre .Yet distinguishing itself from the many novels already published in the United Stats dealing with the same issue, Hawthorne's narrative has its own originality, which has interested so many readers, and it follows, then, that The Scarlet Letter has been one of the most criticized and reviewed books in the...