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Word Count: 952
Hawthornes The Scarlet Letter is considered the first symbolic novel in American Literature His use of symbolism in the novel presents a complex view of sin and its effects Utilizing characters colors settings and objects Hawthornes extended metaphors shape and develop throughout the plot Three main symbols used in expressing Hawthornes message are the forest the use of sunlight and shadows and the use of colorsThe use of colors in The Scarlet Letter is one of the more obvious symbols in the plot Hawthorne openly states the meanings in some instances The color black is the color of sin and the devil Black is the color cast in shadows the color that Chillingworth a man of pure evil is referred to by and the color worn by Dimmesdale Dimmesdale wears black because he is a greater sinner for not openly accepting his original sin Chillingworth is known as the black man as stated by Pearl because he possesses the greatest sin possible The title of the black man is also refers to the devil himself Hester states this to Pearl in regard to her sin Darkness is commonly known as a negative connotation and Hawthorne uses it extensively The color red is the symbol of honesty and truth Pearl is always wearing red because she although is the product of sin is not a sinner herself She is constantly honest and truthful The scarlet letter is in fact a symbol of truthfulness The letter A is worn in the acceptance and repentance of sin and is therefore a symbol of truth Heste wears the color gray as a symbol of being partially honest Hester has accepted her sin of adultery but still possesses sin in the form of dishonesty towards Chillingworth and Dimmesdale Until her opening up to Dimmesdale and the village she will not be totally ridden of her sin Hawthorne uses color to express that hiding truth makes one uglier and will cause
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