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Word Count: 293
In Hawthornes The Birthmark Georgianas birthmark bears the shape of a hand but the hand refers to much more than a physical description Alluding to the mark as a work of God Hawthorne implies God created this flaw as a portrayal of the predestined sin Although Georgiana appears perfect she lives the life of a mortal therefore she must carry the burden of Original Sin Aylmer blames Nature for this fatal flaw of humanity and attempts to rid Georgiana of this imperfection through scientific methods Hawthorne 12 But as Hawthorne illustrates in his short story no mortal can improve upon Gods creations When his experiment proves successful Aylmer rejoices over his wifes flawlessness but he soon realizes the consequences of his actions By achieving perfection Georgiana defies mortality and dies shortly thereafter She states Do not repent that with so high and pure a feeling you have rejected the best the earth could offer Aylmer dearest Aylmer I am dying Hawthorne 21 While Aylmer views the birthmark as a stain marring his wifes face his wife and even her former lovers recognize it as what essentially defines her existence Similarly society functions on the basis of its flaws As Georgiana cannot attain perfection society cannot achieve utopia Thus Hawthorne illustrates how individuals should accept their shortcomings rather than try to conceal or remove them Because Aylmer tries to perfect Gods work he ultimately proves unsuccessful Georgianas birthmark symbolizes the Original Sin bestowed upon all by the hand of God Thus the birthmark represents the imprint of Gods hand itself As a mere mortal Aylmer cannot rid his wife of this crimson hand for Gods strength and powers far surpass the abilities of Aylmer
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