The Scarlet Letter offers an extraordinary insight into the norms and behavior of the 17th century if American Puritan society. The basic conflicts and problems of its main characters, however, are familiar to readers in the present. The female protagonist, has borne a child out of wedlock and has been jailed for over three months and sentenced to wear a symbol of her adultery, a scarlet “A” on her dress at all times. It concerns about the moral, emotional and psychological effect of the sin on people in general. It’s not simply a love story or a story of sin. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne uses the scarlet letters to symbolize the harshness of Puritan society, showing how they brand sinners for life.
The story happened in Boston about 200 years ago. It narrates love affairs between three persons. The punished woman. Hester Prynne and his husband. Who called himself Roger Chillingworth . He is an old misshapen man and a doctor. Hester does not love him at all. Another man is a young minister, Dimmesdale, who has a high position among ministers and is highly respected among his people in town. Hester and Dimmesdale love each other. But their love is forbidden in that time . It is sinful. Due to this,Hester is punished by society with a letter A on her chest, which considered an evil, a shame.
In this novel, the mainline seems to be around the letter A. Hester is brave enough to face the cruel reality. She is always with a mind of courage. She has been alone with her child for so long , with litter communication. Shame! Hopelessness! Loneliness! Hester has to wear the letter A day after day, seven years as for punishment and ill fame.
When a woman has lived through a difficult experience, her character changes a great deal. If she be all tenderness, she will die. If she survive, the tenderness will leave her .Hester’s charitable deeds and quiet humility have earned her a reprieve from the scorn of the community. The letter on her chest represents her work on earth , always helping others, without expecting any thanks. Never afterwards, does that scarlet letter leave her chest. The townspeople no longer view the letter as a punishment , but rather as representing her great strength and bravery and thy say it means “Able”。
But Arthur Dimmesdale, his sin against Hester and Pearl is that he will not acknowledge them as his wife and daughter in the daylight. He keeps his dreadful secret from all those under his care in the church for seven years for fear that he will lose their love and will not be forgiven. He is too weak to admit his sins. He suffers from mysterious heart trouble, seemingly caused by psychological distress. What’s worse, he is an advisor to the townspeople about their sins.
After Mr. Dimmesdale’s death , no one changes more in appearance than Roger Chilling worth. All his strength and energy has been used to harm his patient . This unhappy man has made his aim in life to add to the suffering of the young minister. When the evil old man no longer has such a purpose, the devil takes him back to the hell . It is a curious subject of observation, however, whether hatred or love are not of the same place. Each takes a great deal of emotion from one person. The two feelings seem basically the same, expect that one is smiled upon by God, while the other is worshipped by the devil. The two lovers has ever decided to flee to Europe, where they can live with their dauthter Pearl as a family .They feel a sense of release there. However, their plan fails…… When Hester dies, she is buried next to Dimmesdale. The two share a single tombstone, with a deep colored letter A shining brightly.