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Word Count: 972
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne expresses the aspects of relationships religion community discipline and punishment in the puritan community of 17th century Boston Relationships between men and women were very constrained and that is what made adultery such a bad sin in the eyes of everyone in the community Religion seemed to govern over all people would look up to reverends and the community believed that fate was their destiny Public discipline and punishment were used to discourage everyone else from committing the same crime or sin as the offending criminal did The community was to follow the beliefs of god and to do their duties the best they could yet they also criticize and punish all that disobeyed the religion or laws In 17th century Boston every thing was very strict and everyone was expected to follow the laws which makes Hesters sin such an excellent example of the beliefs of that time period The first scaffold scene is very important because the scene sums up the beliefs of the general public at that time and gives a prospective of what Hester Prynne must deal with In the beginning of chapter two the scene is described as it could have betokened nothing short of the anticipated execution of some noted culprit47 this shows that the whole town was there for a ruthless public punishment The crowd was not there for an execution though but there for a public punishment of Hester Prynne who had committed adultery A townsman describes Hesters punishment to a stranger as they have doomed Mistress Prynne to stand only a space of three hours on the platform of the pillory and then thereafter for the remainder of her natural life to wear a mark of shame upon her bosom58 This scene shows the weight of values and morals upon society in the 17th century and how public punishment was not only used as punishment but as a way to
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