Public Penitence in Nathaniel Hawthorne's Novel, The Scarlet Letter
Public penitence is no longer trusted as punishment in the current western society. However, back Puritan society, it had been in a few ways considered worse than loss of life. In Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, the criminals of regulations become it governmental or spiritual, were taken in sight of most onto the scaffold to publicly screen their wrongdoing. Merely as the scaffold may be the center of the city, additionally it is the center of the account. The scenes that happen at the scaffold will be the most important situations in the account; they establish the surroundings for the story and so are pivotal to the plot.
The first actions at the scaffold can be in chapter two; this models the backdrop for the whole novel. At the start of the chapter, we start to see the Puritan society standing, looking forward to Hester Prynne to emerge from the jail and make her visit to the scaffold. The coarseness of the society is illustrated by this picture, where Hester's fellow citizens are awaiting her. Some of the women of all ages are discussing their disagreement with her punishment, one expressing, "'this woman has taken shame upon people, and must die'" (49). These gossiping women, despite their small functions, inform the readers of the overall Puritan belief of regulation and order. This picture explains Hester Prynne's humble position in the contemporary society and graphically describes the humiliation she suffers. As Hester is always on the scaffold her partner, Roger Chillingworth, and her lover, Arthur Dimmesdale, are standing up nearby. Through this picture, Hawthorne hints to us they are very important characters, and you will be developed throughout the