Torment Of MisfortuneThe guilt, hypocrisy, and vengeance revealed in The Scarlet Letter.Amanda NguyenAmerican Experience Period 2Ms.
DeraneySeptember 24th, 2004 In an age of sexual repression and conservatism, there is never room for publicshow of relationships.Emotions and affection are kept hidden from the public eye.With such limitations there is always an urge to break from what is considered proper.From this, lies and deceit are born to cover our mistakes. Hester Prynne stands helpless on a scaffold with her illegitimate daughter Pearl, wearing a blazoned scarlet “A”, making known she is an adulterer.
Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale stands silent within the on looking crowd as his lover and daughter are to be persecuted.In the far corner, stands Roger Chillingworth, Hester’s husband quietly embittered at his wife’s infidelities.A soiled and twisted love triangle connects these three individuals as Hester’s persecution draws near.Nathaniel Hawthorne uses these individuals to exemplify guilt, hypocrisy and vengeance through secrecy and sin in The Scarlet Letter. Hester Prynne pities the life of her daughter Pearl, labeled a child of sin and a product ofadultery.
Pearl is in essence a real representation of the scarlet letter that she bears. Hester’s own doing lays out the fate of her child."…Hester's impassioned state had been the medium through which were transmitted to the unborn infant the rays of its moral life; and, however white and clear originally, they had taken the deep stains of crimson and gold, the fiery lustre, the black shadow, and the untempered light of the intervening substance. Above all, the warfare of Hester's spirit, at that epoch, was perpetuated in Pearl."Hester has the power to make things right and announce the identity of Pearl’s father Arthur Dimmesdale, however she holds back for fear of ruining her partners reputation and esteem.Hester holds commitment to both Pearl and Dimmesdale, she endures the sting of guilt through her silence. Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, a supposed “man of god” takes silence along with Hester.
He is guilty of his sins but more so guilty of being a walking hypocrisy in his congregation.To rectify his wrongs, he preaches of god and refraining from sin. However he continues to hide his relationship with Hester and denies his illegitimate daughter the privilege of his name.
His commitments to the church are a conflict with his feelings of sinfulness and his need to confess.He yearns to confess but fears the negative outcomes.In his subconscious he wishes to tell all his sins, but results in his strong participation in church.
"'Even in the graveyard here at hand…
.They are new to me. I found them growing on a grave, which bore no tombstone, nor other memorial of the dead man, save these ugly weeds, that have taken upon themselves to keep him in remembrance. They grew out of his heart, and typify, it may be, some hideous secret that was buried with him, and which he had done better to confess during his lifetime.' 'Perchance,' said Mr. Dimmesdale, 'he earnestly desired it, but could not.
'" Dimmesdale cannot tell the world of his wrong doings, but he becomes an emotionally strong speaker and the people can receive spiritual guidance from him. “It is inconceivable, the agony with which this public veneration tortured him!”These actions contradict themselves in Dimmesdale’s personal struggles and his passion for preaching to his congregation. As Dimmesdale struggles with self hypocrisy, Roger Chillingworth senses that Dimmesdale may in fact be the father of Pearl and Hester’s lover.Chillingworth feels that Hester’s vows of marriage to him were violated.
He is enraged that she has an illegitimate child.He begins a personal grudge against Dimmesdale in order to calm his rage.After the evidence that completes his suspicions towards Dimmesdale, Chillingworth confirms Dimmesdale is in fact Hester’s lover."'I might have known it,' murmured he.
'I did know it!' Was not the secret told me, in the natural recoil of my heart, at the first sight of him, and as often as I have seen him? Why did I not understand? O Hester Prynne, thou little, little knowest all the horror of this thing! And.