Free Essay on Nathaniel Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter - Pearl as The Scarlet Letter

  • Length: 1181 words (3.4 double-spaced pages)
  • Rating: Excellent
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

Pearl as The Scarlet Letter


The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a novel that shows the Puritanical way of life. Society does not accept the fact that Hester has committed the sin of adultery so they cast her out by making her wear a scarlet letter 'A' across her chest. Pearl is the product of Hester's sin, the scarlet letter is the product of society. This idea shows that Pearl is the scarlet letter and the scarlet letter is Pearl. There are many ways in which Pearl is shown to be as the scarlet letter because she is considered to be a part of nature, she is the physical connection between Dimmesdale and Hester, and Pearl is the reason that makes Dimmesdale and Hester to finally accept their sin and make their confession in front of society and the people within society. The reasons are listed in this manner because in the first one nature is a stronger force that human force, then comes her connection between Dimmesdale and Hester because she is the natural connection which is a link from the first one to the second and also her being the reason Dimmesdale and Hester accepting the sin is last because there is a stronger connection between the child and the parents here which is linked from the previous reason.


Pearl is a product of a natural act done by two human beings. This is the act of sex. But society considers it to be bad because there was no social contract between the parents to have that baby. But still its natural so it makes Pearl natural and cast out by society. Even her mother notices that it is society that seems to make Pearl the "evil" girl she is, "She knew that her deed had been evil; she could have no faith, therefore, that its result would be for good. Day after day she looked fearfully into the child's expanding nature; ever dreading to detect some dark and wild peculiarity, that could restore to the guiltiness to which she owed her being."( The Scarlet Letter. Nathaniel Hawthorne. 86) Here what is depicted is that Pearl's evil is from her mother's "guiltiness". So if Hester has none of that guilt that came from society then she would naturally be a good girl. Also, Pearl seems to be connected to nature because there is some contact where Pearl has some kind of communication with Pearl.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Free Essay on Nathaniel Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter - Pearl as The Scarlet Letter." 26 May 2018
Title Length Color Rating  
Evil is In the Eyes of the Beholder: "The Scarlet Letter", by Nathaniel Hawthorne - In society there are always two kinds of people, good people and bad people. The good people, the teachers pets who always do everything right. They follow the rules and always think of others. Then, you have to bad people, the trouble makers who always do the wrong thing. They break the rules and do things their way. Everyone is classified in one group or the other, and is always thought to be good or bad. In the novel, The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Pearl is evil. Pearl is doomed from the beginning to be evil....   [tags: Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, characters, e] 1604 words
(4.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter Essay - In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, the Puritan community banned all forms of sin. Sin was looked upon as evil, being connected to the devil and his dark ways. Hester Prynne, the main character of the story, was shunned by the rest of the Puritan world after committing the sin of adultery. She lived in a world where it was not accepted. She was isolated from the world around her, having little hope. Throughout the novel, symbols such as the character of the kind woman, the wild rose bush outside of the prison doors and the character of Pearl, Hester Prynne's illegitimate child, are used to show that even in a world full of sin and darkness, there is always hope....   [tags: Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne] 940 words
(2.7 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Suffering of Arthur Dimmesdale in "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne - Guilt is a very strong emotion, and it can take a merciless toll on a person. For most people, guilt is often a short-lived feeling because we confess why we feel guilty and get it off of our chests. However, this is hardly the case for Arthur Dimmesdale, the father of Hester Prynne’s child in the novel The Scarlet Letter. Dimmesdale does not confess that he has committed a sin with Hester, and for a brutal seven whole years, he withholds his guilt inside of him. Throughout all of that time, he reverts to self-punishment in the form of fasting, consecutive, sleepless vigils, and relentless studying of the Bible....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter, guilt,]
:: 2 Works Cited
994 words
(2.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Forest as a Place of Truth and Freedom in Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter" - The forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel, The Scarlet Letter, represents an array of personas. Both rumors and scandal surround the forest, causing a biased view of this secluded location within the Puritan community. Yet, Hawthorne designates the forest as a place of truth, independence, and joy to those with secrets. Boston’s Puritan society of the mid 1600’s feared the near-bye forest. Believing that “the black man that haunts the forest” (71) and that the witches who do the devil’s work there, the townspeople are warned to stay away the sinful place....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter, ] 761 words
(2.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on Secrets in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s "The Scarlet Letter" - Secrets can destroy even the most respected people. Sometimes is not the secret itself that drives people into exhaustion, but the emotional baggage that comes with it. In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, Reverend Dimmesdale physically deteriorates because of his guilt caused by a dishonorable sin. The Puritan society in which the story is set discourages the idea of the private self, which Hawthorne shows by creating distinctions between the characters’ private and public lives, specifically Dimmesdale’s....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter, secrets, ] 619 words
(1.8 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on A Perception of Sin: Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter - Through out the course of history, those who were considered sinners were often out casted from the society. This is much the case with Hester Prynne in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. After a public trial, Hester is considered a sinner due to her birthing of a so called “devil child”. Hester is convicted to the life long bearing of a scarlet letter on her chest. The Scarlet Letter that Hester Prynne wears symbolizes the change in perception of sin through out the novel. Due to the revelations of the governor Winthrop and the reverend Dimmesdale, the way sin is perceived changes from one of shame to the idea that every one is a sinner in their own right....   [tags: sin, religion, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter] 878 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay about The Mysterious Forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter - The Mysterious Forest in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter      In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, life is centered around a rigid Puritan society. In this society, people are not allowed to express their true thoughts and feelings. Every human being needs the opportunity to express how they truly feel; otherwise the emotions become bottled up until they begin to hurt the person. Unfortunately, the puritans were not allowed this type of expression. Luckily, at least for the four main characters, Hawthorne has created a forest to give them shelter....   [tags: The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne] 1006 words
(2.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Change in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter Essay - Change in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter In life, one may see that there are not many guarantees. However, the closest one may come to a guarantee is that almost anything in life can change. I believe that change can come in many forms....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne Scarlet Letter] 1566 words
(4.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Main Themes of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter and The Minister's Black Veil - Main Themes of Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter and The Minister's Black Veil Nathaniel Hawthorne’s works often have parallel themes and similar characters. His approach is quite gloomy and the atmosphere for his stories is many times sad and depressing. Hawthorne concentrates his novel and short stories around the Puritan community, which adds to the tense and unforgiving atmosphere. One of his most renowned novels, The Scarlet Letter and his short story, The Minister’s Black Veil contain many of his typical elements and are many times referred synonymously....   [tags: Nathaniel Hawthorne, Scarlet Letter, Black Veil] 776 words
(2.2 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Scaffold Scenes in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter Essay - The Scaffold Scenes in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter In Nathaniel Hawthorne?s The Scarlet Letter, the Puritans constantly look down upon sinners like Hester Prynne, both literally and symbolically. The use of the three scaffold scenes throughout the course of the novel proved to be an effective method in proving this theory and showing how Puritan society differs from that of today?s. In the first scaffold scene, Hester is being led from the prison where she has spent the last few months, towards the scaffold clutching her newborn baby to her bosom, covering the scarlet letter-the two symbols representing truth and her lost innocence....   [tags: Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne Essays] 879 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]

Related Searches

When she is at the governor's house she wants to take the sunshine and play with it," Pearl looking at the bright wonder of a house, began to caper and dance, and imperatively required that the whole breadth of sunshine should be stripped off its front, and given to her to play with."(100) Also her mother notices the same thing in her daughter and says, "No my little Pearl! Thou must gather thine own sunshine. I have none to give thee!"(100) This shows how pearl is a natural girl because she can play with the sunlight but she does not just because her mother forces her not to. Pearl being natural relates to her being the scarlet letter because the scarlet letter represents the natural act of sex and also Pearl is the product of the natural act of sex. This leads to the point that Pearl connects Hester and Dimmesdale.


Pearl is the physical connection between Dimmesdale and Hester. Here she really represents the scarlet letter because she is what makes them united. Hester has a scarlet letter, Dimmesdale has a scarlet letter, and Pearl is the Scarlet letter for them because she is their product. There is a natural connection in this family because even though Pearl does not know that Dimmesdale is her father, she has this strong attraction towards him.


"The young minister, on ceasing to speak, had withdrawn a few steps from the group and stood with his face partially concealed in the heavy folds of the window curtain, while the shadow of his figure, which the sunlight cast upon the floor, was tremulous with the vehemence of his appeal. Pearl, that wild and flighty little elf, stole softly towards him, and taking his hand in the grasp of both of her own, laid her cheek against it."(112)


This shows that there is a strong connection between Pearl and her father maybe it is because he also has the scarlet letter on his chest. Also, Pearl tries to connect her parents with her altogether. Pearl asks her father to stand with her and Hester at noontide but he refuses, when Dimmesdale does that, a large figure of the letter 'A' is shown in the sky. During the scene the three characters are together in a union," And there stood the minister, with his hand over his heart; and Hester Prynne with the embroidered letter glimmering on her bosom; and little Pearl herself a symbol, and the connecting link between those two."(151) This shows that pearl is the scarlet letter connecting Hester and Dimmesdale. This leads to Pearl being the reason for Dimmesdale to accept his sin in front of everybody. This is so because if she can control the connection between her parents through the scarlet letter( which is her) then she can also control the will of Dimmesdale whether to make his great confession in front of the public or not to.


Pearl is the reason why Dimmesdale confessed his sin in front of everybody. She seems to have been waiting for the moment of confession so that she can love him again. At one point Pearl stopped showing love to her father until the moment he confessed in public,


" 'My little Pearl' said he, feebly- and there was a sweet and gentle smile over his face, as of a spirit sinking into deep reason... 'dear little Pearl, wilt thou kiss me now? Thou wouldst not, yonder, in the forest! But now thou wilt!'


Pearl kissed his lips. A spell was broken. The great scene of grief, in which the wild infant bore a part, had developed all her sympathies; and as her tears fell upon her father's cheek, they were in the pledge that she would grow up amid human joy and sorrow, nor forever do battle with the world, but be a woman in it."(251)


What is depicted here is that Pearl has lived all her life as the "elf" child just because she was waiting for her father to accept what he did, just like the scarlet letter had to stay on Hester's chest until she confesses who is Pearl's father. Now that Dimmesdale has confesses, Pearl is able to live her normal life just like any other female in society.


Pearl is actually the scarlet letter, she represents the sin of her mother, of her father, but also she wants them to accept truth and to live with it, she cannot rest until this is finally done. Although society does not accept Pearl she is ready to make her parents face up to life.

Return to