Scarlet Letter Rhetorical Analysis

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The Scarlet Letter Rhetorical Analysis
Hawthorne’s reverential admiration toward Hester Prynne, and from it, his sickly and feeble, yet feministic view on women in general, are elucidated through his irate yet carefully judicious tone toward Puritan society, as well as through anaphora and juxtaposing connotations.
Through juxtaposing connotations, Hawthorne conveys his admiration toward Hester, and from it, develops his view on women in general. While wearing the scarlet letter “A” for a few years, Hester’s “light and graceful foliage” had been weakened and faded by the “red-hot brand” of society, which left an exposed, “harsh” mark on her once beautiful skin; nevertheless, she uses her defiance, and thus pain, from society as a source of
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Through juxtaposing connotations, Hawthorne not only hints at the sin and evil that Puritan society succumbs to, but also at the overall effect of the society on beauty and purity. Although Hester’s physical beauty has deteriorated from the evils of Puritan society, she uses her defiance as a way to express her originality, which Hawthorne’s sees and praises, for he respects her strong-will and distinctiveness from the sinful Puritan society. Moreover, Hawthorne’s attitude toward Hester is intertwined to his attitude to women in general. As a result of the effects of the “A,” Hester’s “rich and luxuriant hair” had been either “cut off” or “hidden” from society, and she lost her “Passion,” “pillow of Affection,” and as a result, her “women” qualities, due to the vices of Puritan society. Though describing Hester’s transformation, Hawthorne also hints, through contrasting connotations, at Puritan society and its subordinate view on women. Hester’s losing her “women” qualities in …show more content…
While describing Hester’s changes that were caused by her defiance toward Puritan society, Hawthorne asserts these “such” effects of her actions are “frequently the fate,” and that “such the stern development” occurs when a women lives through a tough, tumultuous time. Through the repetition of “such” when describing the effects of Hester’s actions, Hawthorne’s anaphora highlights his positive attitude toward Hester. Hawthorne explains that Hester’s change in appear was inevitable, for her physical change parallels to her change in identity. Hawthorne admires that Hester realized the changes that would come about from her defying Puritan laws, and reverences not only her acceptance of her actions, but also her individuality and how she went against the corrupt Puritan society. Furthermore, Hawthorne’s use of anaphora in regards to Hester and his attitude toward her, is also tied to his attitude toward women in general. Hawthorne claims that through life and difficulties that arise from it, women must embrace their emotions; thus, “if” they are “all tenderness,” then they “will die,” and “if” they “survive,” the “tenderness” will be “crushed” or buried deep inside of them. The anaphora of “if” further exemplifies Hawthorne’s attitude towards women: he sees them as weak and in need of help when they conform to the social norms