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Symbolism Expressed Through Hawthorne In Nathaniel Hawthornes story The Scarlet Letter he expresses many different symbols that are very significant to the story The most obvious one would probably be the scarlet letter itself It represented all that Hester was to suffer for Another one that I found very important to the story was Pearl She is a living version of her mothers scarlet letter These two symbols both serve as consequences to Hester The scarlet A is her mental consequence and Pearl is her physical consequence Another symbol that helps explain the story is the reason for the scaffold It helps show the difference between Hester and Dimmesdales situations The scarlet letters purpose is to be a symbol of shame and dishonor instead it turns into two different meanings Its meaning shifts as time passes through the story It was intended to mark Hester as an adulterer but later comes to stand for able The letter A has a very big impact on Hesters life She loses the womanliness and elegance she once had Her beauty woman qualities and passion are after a time buried by the A she is forced to wear Long hair was something in that time period that was a symbol of a woman In the beginning of the story her hair is described as dark and abundant hair so glossy that it threw off the sunshine with a gleam 37 But later on Hawthorne mentions that Hester keeps her hair out of site under a cap Hester is portrayed as a haughty woman with a burning blush yet a haughty smile and a glance that would not be abashed looked around at her townspeople and neighbors 37 Hester learns to adapt to the A on her bosom Her breast with its badge of shame was but the softer pillow for the head that needed onethe letter was a symbol of her calling 111 Hester had a heart to
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