Scarlet Letter Response


Word Count: 580

Response to The Scarlet Letter "Confess thy truth and thou
shall have eternal rest." I belive that is the moral to be taught
in this novel of inspirational love, yet a novel of much
sorrow. The impossible became possible in The Scarlet
Letter, a story set back in the Puritan Times. In this
response, I will give my reactions in writing to different
aspects of the novel;the characchters, my likes and dislikes,
my questions, and my opinion of the harsh Puritain lifestyle.
Hester Prynne, the Reverend Dimmesdale, and Roger
Chillingworth each suffered guilt in their own way in the
novel The Scarlet Letter. In the beginning of the novel,
Hester Prynne should have not suffered the way she did on
the scaffold alone. She was forced to be intergated by the
high-officials of the town, while holding her little Pearl in
arms. Making matters worse, the father of the child was in
that very group of officals. She was then sentenced to wear
the scarlet letter "A", showing her guilt "externally". Unable
to take it off, she was forced to show her guilt to the entire
settlement. However, the Reverend Dimmesdale suffered
"internally", with a scarlet letter of his own engraved in his
mind, and on his chest as well. He felt like he betrayed God,
and beat himself in a frenzy to prove his wrongdoing. He
often questioned wheather his authority was true or not.
Roger Chillingworth suffered the least, because he only
failed to reveal the secret that he knew, the father of the
child who Hester Prynne was forced to live with. This small
restriction to his life forced him to suffer "internally". I had
different likes and dislikes in the novel The Scarlet Letter.
There were many things that needed to be judged to fit into
the given catagories, including; character attitudes, and
character decisions. For example, the attitude displayed
from the Reverend Mr. Dimmesdale was rather unnapealing
to me. There are different ways of settling ones guilt rather
than whipping oneself in a closet. The one character whose
attitude was appealing to me was that of Pearl\'s. She
showed that mistakes in a relationship often lead to bad
situations. Her mischeif and connection to the devil are
examples of just those situations. Character decisions played
an euqally important role. For example, I thought the
descision for Hester not to tell who was the father of Pearl
on the scaffold to be very brave, but was wrong. She could
have ended it a lot quicker if she told the truth. A descision
that I supportted was the plan for Hester, the Reverend
Dimmesdale and Pearl to leave town, because it was a way
to start a new life. Certain questions came about when
reading The Scarlet Letter. Many of them involved small
details. . For example, why did Hester not tell her daughter
at a younger age what the "A" embroidered on her clothes
meant? Why did the minister wear elaborate garments when
conducting his self-punishment in the closet? However, other
questions were involving larger situations. Why did the
minster keep quiet when he knew he wouldn\'t live for much
longer? What made Hester finnally remove her scarlet letter
(for a short period of time)? The Puritanic age was a harsh
and brutal period of time. At many times, citizens had no
rights whatsoever. The persecuted depended on the fate of
the few elite, or the top officials of town. Their laws were
srict regaurding having a child out of wedlock, and if not
followed, a scarlet letter "A" would place itself upon that
person(s). My thoughts on the whole Puritanic epoch are not
sympothetic. The strict rules set guildlines and formed a
society in which much of it had no problems. I would even
think that if applied to currnet times, it would turn society
around dramatically.