The Scarlet Letter 6

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The hundreds of pages in a typical novel come together to form an intricate web, whose many strands may be united in the minds of readers to form infinitely different interpretations. In many cases, the authors' representation of their pet issues or most relevant commentaries are depicted by the style of rhetoric. Likewise, through the use of tone, diction, sentence structure, and imagery, Nathaniel Hawthorne's prime purpose in the excerpt from The Scarlet Letter is …

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…possibly dying. The years of mocking and degradation transform Hester into a pale shadow of her former self. When in the forest, Hester is liberated from her sexual repression. She is also liberated from her feelings of guilt. Thus it comes to pass that after "seven years," or any greater or less lapse of time, the culprits are just as remote from true repentance as they were at the moment of committing their sin (line 2).