The Scarlet Letter

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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The Scarlet Letter "The Scarlet Letter", a fictional novel, is written by Nathaniel Hawthorne and was published in 1849. The story took place in New England in the seventeenth century. This was a time when a community exercised control over the moral behavior of its members. Those who broke the community's moral code were publicly humiliated by being placed on the scaffold. The story is structured around four characters: Hester, Pearl, Chillingworth and Dimmesdale. The plot evolved around the events of Hester's adultery and is described in three scaffold scenes. It depicts the passing of Hester and Dimmesdale's adultery being made known and how they deal with it afterwards. After Dimmesdale's deep thinking, he confesses his adultery on the Election Day.

Bringing Pearl, her daughter with her, Hester is led to stand on the scaffold with a scarlet letter "A" put on her chest to commit adultery. When being asked who Pearl's father is, she refuses to reveal his name.

Two years ago, Hester married Chillingworth, who was much older than her. Since he sent her to New England alone and did not find her in two years, Hester believed that he got lost. At last, she had an affair with Dimmesdale. After knowing Hester's adultery, Chillingworth vows to find out who that man is and takes his revenge.

Before the congregation, Dimmesdale struggles to hide his sin of adultery. His health gets worse and worse due to this situation. Chillingworth, who suspects Dimmesdale is Hester's lover, is known as a good physician. By this chance as Dimmesdale's health gets worse, he gets close to him in naming to treat him. One night, after struggling for a long time, Dimmesdale goes to the scaffold where Hester is being publicly humiliated before. While Dimmesdale is standing on...