Essay Babysitting: The Scarlet Letter and Hester Prynne

Submitted By arak
Words: 784
Pages: 4

Character’s Guilt Throughout the book The Scarlet Letter, the four main characters go through a series of events where they find themselves in need of help. In the book, Hawthorne carries out the theme of sin and guilt. Not only does guilt affect ones life, but it can also affect others. Some choose to forgive themselves, while others take the path of an unforgiving life. Hester Prynne is a beautiful young lady. At the beginning of the story she is married to a man named Master Prynne. One day on his way to Boston to see Hester, he’s captured by the Native Americans and held captive. After two years of Master Prynne not returning to Hester, she assumes that he has been lost at sea. Living without Master Prynne, Hester became lonely and she started to wonder if she needed a man in her life to make things easier. That is when she had an affair with a man named Reverend Dimmesdale. Having an affair is very frowned upon in Boston and when the townspeople found out of this sin, Hester was punished with wearing a red “A“ outlined in gold thread on her bosom. Guilt took over Hester for a long while. Of course she had Pearl and Dimmesdale, but they could not help Hester fully cope with the physical and emotional pain that she was feeling. Hester asked for forgiveness, and lived each day sewing and making clothes for the poor. At the end of the story, Hester is then able to free herself from the majority of guilt, when she is able to walk hand in hand with her lover, Reverend Dimmesdale. Hester Prynne's lover, Reverend Dimmesdale, is also faced with guilt when he does not confess his true self. Dimmesdale is a preacher of a church in Boston and a very kind man. Being a preacher, Dimmesdale was not able to marry or have children. In the eyes of the church it was a sin to do so, therefore, Dimmesdale had to be alone all of his life. In a time of weakness, he and Hester Prynne become lovers. Knowing this was a sin, it did not stop the two of committing such a thing. Reverend Dimmesdale knows what he has done, but he does not see it necessary to admit to the townspeople of his sin. He believes that the only time one should do so, is on ones last day, judgment day. All though he will not confess it publicly, he knows he is the father of Hester’s daughter, Pearl. Hester has kept this secret from the public for Dimmesdale for a long time while taking the wrath of punishments alone. Reverend Dimmesdale, being a preacher, endures the most guilt, because he knows a sin is a sin. He cannot let his church down, which makes him carry more guilt and shame. He deals with his guilt physically and psychologically developing an illness as a result. The illness was not physical, it was mental. With having this illness he sees it necessary to get a doctor…