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Copy of Symbolism in The Scarlet Letter

Students of Fort Atkinson High School's English 11-Honors class explore the symbols and social issues outlined in Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel, The Scarlet Letter.


on 16 March 2013

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Transcript of Copy of Symbolism in The Scarlet Letter

Double click anywhere & add an idea Love is not
assumed in
a parent-child
relationship Model Puritan Way of Life Governor's house is
everything Puritans reject Materialism Awkward, Uncomfortable, Stuffy Represents Government Pressure in Community All important figures meet inside the house;
this changes how they act. Public vs. Private Life Happiness Hester can't catch it,
but Pearl can Hester can't feel happiness because of guilt Pearl has no guilt Hidden sins Closed off Secrecy Covering up Guilt Open Acknowledgement of Sin Puritan Code Social Norms Morality Punishment Purity Brooks represents purity
in the forest Pearl represents purity
in the town
(an extension of brook) There is only one true purity amidst all of the evil Hester's Work Passion Rebellion Hester's Redemption True Goodness Town's Acceptance
of Hester Hypocracy Reject Hester but Accept
Her Work Morality How is it defined? Hester's Fiery Passion Deviance and Corruption
in Puritan Village Lack of Acceptance Public flaw,
sins in town Public flaw,
sins in town Hiding sins that
are already known Prison Door Rusty with Spikes Looks old but is new Heavily used Crime never stops Hester's adultery The Scarlet Letter Darkness Place of sin Devil's Playground Place where Pearl
was conceived Hester's Sin Isolation Unwilling/unable
to share emotions Dimmesdale and Chillingworth Hide Their Identity Sunlight Pearl Different from society Hester is different
from Puritan society Pearl is Hester's Joy Beards of the men
in first chapter Chillingworth's Name His name is a
symbol of his character Cold Personality Not warm with Hester,
although she was his wife Allows cruelty to consume him Becomes Frozen in Revenge Pearl -
Hester's shield from society Never goes in
public without Pearl Hester's Only Help Aid Joy Enables Hester to face
scornful society Chillingworth's
Deformity It is evil manifested in his Ruthless Angry Pain from Hester's Act Obsessed Sin "Society's Sins" Secret
Sin "Internal"
Hester's Sin Choices Morality Definition of Morality There's always good
in bad situations Good vs. Evil in
All Aspecs of life Morality in an
immoral world Hope is
always present Defintion
of evil Defintion
of Hope Even the Most beautiful things Everything Has Faults Everything Has Faults Hester's Beauty Makes Mistakes Pearl (a beautiful evil Tolerance of evil
in a society Hypocracy based
on social status Isolation Pearl is separated
from society Devil Child Pearl's innocence New Identity Hester talks of throwing A in ocean and removing it Hester and Dimmesdale speak of new identity across the ocean Ocean also changes
Chillingworth's life Goodness Purity Tranquility Temptation Sinning Punishment Acceptance of
Punishment Chillingworth Living in Dimmesdale's Home Drains strength from his host
just like a leech Symbol of Dimmesdale's Sin Guilt from sin
constantly drains him Scaffold at night Dimmesdale stands on
scaffold at night Hester was humiliated on same scaffold for same sin Fearful of someone
seeing him here Darkness hides him,
and his sin Pearl represents
joy/happiness Associated with shame
and with sin Of great beauty and worth, but outlandish and rare Authority in their community Minister's sermon Dimmesdale is
important to citizens Religion is very
important Isolation

Secrets Cloak of secrecy What secrets are being held? Everyone is hiding secrets from everyone else Hiding true identity Cruelty of old
Puritan women Married, older women despise Hester because of:
Her beauty
Her sin
Her passion
Her freedom Ugliness of the witch represents their inner "ugliness" Concealment Hide disaster Conceal Secrets Hide Hester's
True Feelings/Heart Self-reflection Reflection of
their true souls Clear division between
Hester and Pearl Burrs Guilt Pearl gives it to
her mother Guilt Pearl gives it to
Dimmesdale Scorn Blame Flame of Passion Hester and Dimmesdale Adultery Punishment Higher Power God Red Flames
of Hell Growth of Passion Cut Off Ending of Hester and
Dimmesdale'sRelationship Hester's Life and Happiness
is now restricted Stuck with the consequences
of her decision Ugly WeedS Chillingworth's
Revenge Hatred Lies Deceit Regret Blame Self Hatred Covered Hair Self Punishment Loss of Womanhood Loss of Beauty Loss of Freedom Defiance Flames of Hell Happiness Pearl chases
sunshine Truth As Hester steps into
sunlight, people see her
adultery/soul Innocence Sunshine disappears
when Hester approaches Suit of Armor Represents structure of Puritan
society People molded themselves to fit into Puritan ideals Revenge Red eyes reflect the revenge
festering inside of Dimmesdale The flames of hell are
in his eyes Mistrust Acceptance of death/fate Innocence Truth Flaws in
beauty Darkness within
the soul Secret sin Mortality Legacy of
our lives Final result
for all people Fallibility of Man Human/Societal Perfection
is not Possible Pearl's Name Something so beautiful comes from something so ugly Oyster Dimmesdale Kisses Pearl Importance of
Parents Pearl Kisses Dimmesdale Power of
Forgiveness Pearl Impact of
a Fatherless Home Evil of Child Born
Out of Sinful Act Guilt Result of Breaking
from social norms Innocence of Nature Child Born of Love Connection with Natural World Goodness of being
an individual/self Hester's Cottage Loneliness Natural place for those
that live on fringe of society Natural boundary between
good and evil, right and wrong Lack of acceptance
of those different from ourselves Outcast Stripped of identity Ocean Man's Imperfection Fall from
Positions of Power Corruption of Leadership Dimmesdale's Fall
from Highest Social
Position in Society Symbolism in
The Scarlet Letter Possible meanings for
symbols are explored Created by 11-Honors Students
Fort Atkinson High School
Full transcript