Symbolism of the Scarlet Letter

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The Scarlet Letter, written in the 1800’s by Anti-Transcendentalist Nathaniel Hawthorne, tells the story of Hester Prynne. Young Hester lived in New England, about the same time witch trials were still conducted, and she is found guilty of carrying a baby whose father she refuses to confess. The punishment for this crime is from then until the rest of her life, Hester had to bear a stitched “A” on her breast. This “A” carries the …

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…be unaware of her mother’s existence without this symbol, which began as a punishment and seems to become more of a symbol of pride in all that Hester as gone through and achieved. Hawthorne’s repetition of the usage of symbol in this novel is proven to be extremely effective. The scarlet letter is originally something the reader is unable to imagine having to bear and grows into a symbol of pride and identification.