Scarlet Letter Chapter 9
Upon returning to the colony, Chillingworth renamed himself as such in an attempt Along with assuming a new personality he takes up the job of being a doctor. Upon looking out the window, they see Pearl and Hester in the graveyard where . Quiz. Where did Chillingworth find the strange-looking weeds? What does. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. Hester speaks to Dimmesdale about Pearl and is ecstatic that father and any sentimental and tender aspects of the couple's relationship from the reader, which. What is significant about Pearl's treatment of Dimmesdale at the end of Pearl's relationship to her mother change after Dimmesdale's death?.
Chillingworth and Dimmesdale have a heated discussion on the confession of sins. As Dimmesdale sleeps, Chillingworth discovers a mark on his chest and rejoices. Chillingworth psychologically torments Dimmesdale who sleeps little and ponders his sin. He decides to hold a late night vigil on the scaffold where Hester had suffered years earlier.
Pearl and Hester pass by and they converse. Pearl asks Dimmesdale to stand with them at the scaffold the next day. Chillingworth appears and escorts Dimmesdale back to his home. The next day, Dimmesdale delivers a powerful sermon. It is clear that of the three main characters, Hester suffers least. The stigma of the scarlet letter has lessened.
Hester and the Physician — Hester informs Chillingworth, who has become the embodiment of evil, that she will tell Dimmesdale who Chillingworth is. Hester and Pearl — After conversing with Chillingworth, Pearl returns.
Hester sends Pearl away as the minister approaches. Dimmesdale is angry, but forgives Hester. The two plan to sail to Europe together. A Flood of Sunshine — The two feel free for the first time in years. Hester flings the letter into the woods and calls for Pearl. Another popular theory is that the letter was carved into Dimmesdale by his own hand. Chillingworth dies within the year, and Hester moves back to England, until she returns to New England.
Pearl lives happily with a husband in England at the end of the book. Why does Hester return to New England? Hester felt that she had to finish her sentence, and that she could best do that at the scene of her sin. Hester also feels that New England was her home, and had enough memories to make her come back.
TheHonorsPage: Chapters Scarlet Letter Q&A
When Hester returns to New England, it is made known that if Pearl knew where Hester was, she would go to her. The Scarlet Letter is much more than a metaphor for searing stigma. Hester Prynne and her daughter Pearl are the archetypal unwed mother and illegitimate child in American social history.
Before the story begins, we learn, Hester had been married in Europe to a dried-up, pretentious, academic sort who sent her ahead to America, intending to follow. He got hung up pursuing his fruitless studies, and after a couple of years, everyone, including Hester, presumed he lay dead at the bottom of the sea. Hester and her minister--yes, Puritan minister--Arthur Dimmesdale, had fallen in love and had relations.
Dimmesdale had a crisis of conscience. Dimmesdale never does have as the story progresses is the courage, or necessity, to own up to his adultery or his fatherhood. While Hester is forced to stand for hours before the censorious community, Governor Bellingham directs Dimmesdale to use his priestly persuasive powers on Hester to make her name the child's father.
Scarlet Letter Chapter 9
Accord ing to the notes in my edition, Hawthorne's prototype for his fictional governor and upholder of the law was a real Massachusetts governor of the same name. In Bellingham married a woman already betrothed to a friend of his and performed the ceremony himself in a rush job, so as to avoid going through the required publication of marriage intentions.
When asked to step down from the bench during an inquest about his breach of law, he refused. Thus, Hawthorne shows us "a people amongst whom religion and law were almost identical," inflicting a punishment equivalent to death on a woman, through the offices of their minister and their governor, each of whom has transgressed the same laws for which Hester is to be banished from human society.
Hester pays dearly for her and Dimmesdale's love. Unlike him, she cannot conceal the fact of her adulterous sex because she cannot hide her pregnancy.
She cannot flee from the fact of her motherhood because the child is in her and issues from her. And she cannot escape parenthood, because no one else is going to take care of the child and child abandonment is frowned upon.
Dimmesdale pays, too, but his is a very private penance. He is eaten by guilt and dies near the end of the novel. She is marked from the get-go, presumed by the Puritans to be the child of the devil. Even Hester absorbs the social view that nothing good can issue from a woman who was in a state of sin when the child was "imbibing her soul. She does eventually grow up to lead an apparently prosperous life--but only by escaping from her home and living in England.
So it is today with what is now called the illegitimacy problem: The stigma of nonmarital sex, the identity as biological parent, and the work of child rearing almost always fall on the women.
In the absence of an omniscient narrator, the fathers often remain invisible, at least to the public eye. Like Pearl, illegitimate children are regarded as predestined to a life of waywardness.
Now, however, we cite statistical probabilities instead of the devil as the cause of their propensity to crime, drug abuse, dropping out of school, going on the dole, and having more out-of-wedlock children.
Many conservatives seem to have adopted The Scarlet Letter as a primer on what to do about illegitimacy. Mothers of illegitimate children should be heaped with scorn for neglecting, abandoning, and abusing their children. They are irresponsible and immoral for "getting pregnant," as though they did it all by themselves. In Hawthorne's Puritan Salem, at least, Dimmesdale would have been held equally responsible and immoral, had he been found out.
Sex, Lies, and The Scarlet Letter
The way to deter people from having illegitimate children is to do what Salem did to Hester: Thus, the Republican Personal Responsibility Act would eliminate AFDC eligibility for young women who bear children outside marriage, and it would preclude any additional monies for women already on AFDC who bear another child.
The double standard of The Scarlet Letter still prevails. Both the Republican and Democratic versions of welfare reform pay lip service to holding fathers more accountable, but both treat mothers far more harshly. Both plans, like Governor Bellingham, talk tough about establishing paternity. Mothers will have to cooperate with the state in identifying fathers and establishing paternity.
The Republican bill, strikingly, does not add a thing to existing child support enforcement tools or provisions. Neither bill sets up work requirements, much less job programs, for fathers. So beyond identifying more fathers, what will welfare reform do to men? At its toughest, it might succeed at getting the courts to order more child support, but whether it will get more money to kids is another question.
Nothing in the Republican reforms creates more jobs, more job stability, or higher wages for men. States would, however, be allowed to use money they would otherwise spend for food stamps to subsidize private sector jobs.
And perhaps even more important, nothing in the contemplated welfare reforms is addressed to increasing fathers' involvement with their kids. Because most of the father's payments go to the state, the system doesn't even give dads the psychological satisfaction of helping their kids.The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne (Summary and Summary) - Minute Book Report
Part way through The Scarlet Letter, Hester and Pearl have one of those quintessential conversations about where Pearl "came from" that might have been a lesson in family values, had Hester not felt the pressing need to protect Pearl's father.
I have no Heavenly Father. Some of the good Christians of the town, it seems, had concluded that "if the child were really capable of moral and religious growth. There she has an audience with Governor Bellingham, Arthur Dimmesdale, and another minister named Wilson.