Scarlet Letter Essay Essay, Research Paper
“To be fully human is to balance the heart, the mind, and the spirit. One could suggest the novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, that one should not violate the sanctity of the human heart. Hester was well ahead of her time, and believed that love was more important than living in a lie. Dimmesdale s theology and his inclinations render him almost incapable of action; Chillingsworth dammed himself, along with Dimmesdale. Hester was frank with [Chillingsworth].
Hester s real sin, which she admits in her first interview with Chillingsworth, was to marry the old man. Neither loved each other. Hawthorne appeared to hint that Hester married him because of social and economic necessity; he appeared to have married her because he though she would bring a little life into his existence. The matter appeared doomed in Hawthorne s eyes, and unnatural. Hester doomed herself when she married Chillingsworth, certified that doom when she committed adultery, and finalized that doom when she concealed Chillingsworth s identity from Dimmesdale. The effects these events had were the separation from her society, her lover, her husband, her child, and her own best self. She did it all in the name of sanctity, for true love, and she paid the price. Dimmesdale was changed by the affair in a way that [he] grew emaciated; his voice, though still rich and sweet had a [tone] of decay.
As a believing Puritan, Dimmesdale saw himself as predestined for damnation. Hawthorne explained how the poor man kept silent by the very constitution of [his] nature. Dimmesdale wanted to be with Hester, but he was weak. Hawthorne spoke about Dimmesdale s bloody scourge in his closet, and how he beat himself with it. Hawthorne seemed to suggest that Dimmesdale s real existence on [earth] was the anguish of his inmost soul. Chillingsworth was a leech of evil, and Dimmesdale was his host. Chillingsworth continuously tried to get a confession from Dimmesdale: No-not to [you]-an earthly physician. Chillingsworth sin was by far the greatest, as Dimmesdale stated: That old man s revenge has been blacker than my sin. He has violated, in cold blood, the sanctity of the human heart. This being the unpardonable sin.
One should not violate the godliness of a pure heart. Hester was a radical woman in her time, more like a 20th century woman. She knew that true love was more important than a phony, love-less marriage. Hawthorne appeared to make Dimmesdale an incredibly weak man; he could not confess his sin to the people, until it had almost killed him: I am a dying man. So let me [take] my [shame]. Chillingsworth was the Black Man. His quest for knowledge turned him into a rational monster. After Arthur Dimmesdale becomes his object of obsession, he changes his name to emphasize his new, damned identity.
Hawthorne s predictions given through Hester proved to be true, man just had to be ripe enough to accept things for what they really were, and not for what they thought.