Transcendentalism in the The Scarlet Letter essay

Transcendentalism in The Scarlet Letter , a story constructed with verbose prose and prolific detail, has a level of anticompetitive encouragement that delves into the deeper implications of s in and human nature. Nathaniel Hawthorne, born in the first half of the sass’s, looks back, r fleeting on a time that haunts his family name. He was born Nathaniel Hawthorne, but later chain geed his name to cleanse himself of its religious stigma.

His crystallographer’s, a judge of t he Salem Witch Trials, who convicted and sentenced witches to death, had never repented his wrongdoings. That name change sheds light on the possibility that Hawthorne condemned his an sector’s actions, illuminating an antiquarian stance responding to the latter with Transcendent al ideals. Those ideals can be related to the , in which Hawthorne uses Puritanical Boston as a microcosm to express his views against organized religion’s corruptibility.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!

order now

He does this through criticisms congruent with those of Transcendentalism and embodies the ideal s of self reliance in Hester Prone, compensation in Roger Chlorinating, and love through the for paving nature of the townspeople. In the days of the late 1 ass’s; the time frame of The Scarlet Letter , the main governance of Puritanical Boston was a devout theocracy. Since the church elders were al so political leaders, any church infraction was also a social one (Kier).

Because Of this bond beet en “that early severity in Puritan character’ (Hawthorne, 39) and the law making government t, laws were often created to coincide with their severe religious standards. Hester Prune’s sin the adultery Monolayer 2 committed with Reverend Timescale resulting in the birth of Pearl subjects her to Puritan law. She is publicly shamed with baby Pearl, and must live her life with the sac reel letter embroidered on her chest.

John Riskier, a professor of English at Columbia IS university, had this to say about Hawthorn’s Transcendentalist origins: “The Romances of Hath erne can hardly be understood apart from the current of Transcendentalism in which his genius I s formed” (Riskier, 16). Hawthorne, a man of transcendental beliefs, embodies the ideology of self reel manic in Hester Prone. Ralph Wald Emerson, one of the forefathers of Transcendent Allis, published two series of essays, and they are seen as the basis and foundation of Transact mentalist thought. One essay Self Reliance in his first series, focuses on the Transcendentalist tenet of self reliance.

It reads: “Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must ex people if it be goodness” (Emerson). What Emerson is essentially trying to say is that, anyone e who conforms to a societal boundary, must only do so once they have thoroughly examined who ether that society is parallel to their beliefs. If one doesn’t agree with the societal boundaries, then they should not imply and, instead, rely solely on themselves to do what they believe is right t. Emerson quote can be directly drawn to Hester in .

The narrator, through Hawthorne says: … She cast away the fragments Of a broken chain. The world’s law was no law f or her mind. It was an age in which the human intellect, newly emancipated, had take en a more active and a wider range than for many centuries before. Men of the sword h ad overthrown nobles and kings. Men bolder than these had overthrown and rear arranged ? not actually, but within the sphere of theory, which was their most real abode the Monolayer 3 hole system of ancient prejudice, wherewith was linked much of ancient PRI incline. Hester Prone imbibed this spirit. Hawthorne, 113) Here, Hawthorne is referring to Hester embedded spirit of self reliance. Whew n he refers to men Overthrowing kingdoms, he is equating their revolutionary spirit to that Of Hess terse. Now, these revolutionary men are obviously in no accordance with their respective rulers, whom they are overthrowing and are self reliant when basing their judgment against their r Euler. Before any connections between self reliance and Hester can be made, it is imperative to toe that Hester sin was committed out of love, rather than being done out of spite for societal boundaries.

Moreover, because Hawthorne directly relates the self reliant ‘men of the sow rd’ to Hester, he is stating that Hester herself is self reliant, which is one of the main principles of Transcendentalism. The author portrays Hester as an independent woman, w which can be seen not only by how Hester lives a removed lifestyle, but also through her ability to re sits conforming to societal boundaries. The polar opposite of Hester love and self reliance is Clownishness’s need of attribution and revenge.

Ralph Wald Emerson, the aforementioned Transcend dentals thinker, wrote an essay titled Compensation . In this essay, Emerson describes how the world works in equilibrium, emphasizing Newton’s Third law: “For every action, there is an CEQ al and opposite reaction” In , Emerson talks about a few specific cases of compensation that can be directly seen in . For example, Emerson states: “All infractions of love and equity in our social relations are speedily punished fear… E honest with a man and you have no fear. Try to deceive and the relationship deteriorates” (Emerson). Emerson’ s main point is Monolayer 4 parallel to Newton’s third law, that regardless of the action, there is an equal r action however, the action may take another form as can be seen in this example. In the case of Chlorinating in , he commits an infraction against the love between Hester and Timescale, torturing Timescale as retribution for having a child with his wife.

It could b e said that Hester situation also fits into the parameters of transcendental thought, but the idea can be argued with more depth in the context of Clownishness’s intentions. When Chi Loincloth met tit Hester in the jail cell, he proclaimed: “l shall seek this man, as I have sough HTH truth in books; as I have sought gold in alchemy. There is a sympathy that will make me cons socio of him. Shall see him tremble. I shall feel myself shudder, suddenly and unawares. So owner or later, he must needs be 52).

As can be seen, Chlorinating is clearly out to seek revenge against Timescale. Cross applying this quote to Emerson statement NT about love, Hawthorne uses Clownishness’s violation of love as the basis of the compensate Zion to come. Later, when Timescale publicly confesses to the crowd, Chlorinating “knelt down beside IM, with a blank, dull countenance, out Of which the life seemed to have deep rated” (Hawthorne, 175). Clownishness’s main goal was to seek revenge on Timescale, and here , we can see nature’s punishment for his infraction.

In other words, Hawthorne is trying to convey the idea of repentance and, the act of confession and acknowledgement should be equal lay reacted to by redemption; if there is an act of evil, without seeking its equilibrium through r pentacle, the party will be equally reacted to by damnation. And, congruent with the words of Transcendentalism, Hawthorne implemented Chlorinating to embody his bell fiefs of compensation in Monolayer 5 Another, and possibly more abstract, ideology of Transcendentalism that Haw throne embraces in is love.

Emerson, in his essay titled , talks about the intricacies of love and passion “For it is a fire that, kindling its first embers in t he narrow nook of a private bosom, caught from a wandering spark out of another private he art, glows and enlarges until it warms and beams upon multitudes of men and women, pup n the universal heart of all, and so lights up the whole world and all nature with its generous flames ” (Emerson). Looking at love and passion through the lens of valves an interesting dynamic between Hester and the townspeople.

At the beginning of The Scarlet Letter , Hester is seen as an outcast someone who would probably never be able to reintegrate to society . However, Hester minds her own business, accepts the use of her sin for religious education, an d sews garments for the underprivileged; through her good works, she is slowly redeemed in the e yes of the society that had previously condemned her: Hester Prone did not now occupy precisely the same position in which we be held her during the earlier periods of her ignominy.

Years had come and gone. Pearl w as now even years old. Her mother, with the scarlet letter on her breast, glittering in its fantastic embroidery, had long been a familiar object to the townspeople. As is apt to b e the case when a person stands out in any prominence before the community, and, at t he same time, interferes neither with public nor individual interests and convenience, a species of general regard had ultimately grown up in reference to Hester Prone.

It is to the credit of human nature, that, except where its selfishness is brought into play, it loves more readily than it hates. Hatred, by a gradual and quiet process, will even be transforms to love, unless the change be impeded by a continually new irritation of the original fee ling of Monolayer 6 hostility. In this matter of Hester Prone, there was neither irritation nor irks menses. (Hawthorne, 110) Hawthorne states that because of Hester good deeds, her Puritan counterpane arts now view her in a positive light.

In connection to Emerson aforementioned quote, Hester 10 eve was once festering in her bosom with Timescale (Emerson quote is also strikingly sis malaria the wording of Hester throughout the book with usage of words like: nature, boos m, lights up, lames), and now the love can be seen in all directions with Pearl, with the IM perished people, and with her newfound love for life. The people of Boston see this an d start to admire Hester, sympathizing with her. To paraphrase Hawthorne: human nature love s more readily than it hates and, through that belief, the ideal Of love is embodied in Transcended titlist context.

Ironically, Hawthorne was once cited as saying that he was opposed to Transcendentalism and its values and ideals. However, through careful exam nation and analysis, many of the Transcendentalist ideas are embraced and embodied throughout n almost every aspect. Hawthorne, through his use of Hester, exemplifies self reliance and the ability to resist conforming to an oppressive society. In addition, Hawthorne el suicides the Transcendentalist ideology of compensation through Clownishness’s search of r retribution.

And lastly, the idea of love, although not exclusive to Transcendentalism, is illustrate Ted through Hester redemption in the eyes of the townspeople. Monolayer 7 Works Cited . N. P. , 1841. Essays: First Series 1. Ralph Wald Emerson Texts . Web. 19 Feb.. 2015. . In this essay, Ralph Wald Emerson, the father of Transcendentalism, express sees his views on the theory of compensation. Emerson establishes the term compels action as the process of action, followed by a reaction.

He states that the world works in equilibrium m, where, congruent with Newton’s Third Law, every action has an equal and opposite r action. Although some instances of reaction may affect things more abstractly; he establishes t hat principle through examples, one which is strikingly similar to a relationship in The essay of is one of the focus points in this paper. Since Emerson is the father of Transcendentalism, his ideas are considered central to its core belief s. When looking at compensation through in the context of , there are many different situations where actions taken in the book are responded to.

However, the most promotion .NET and important one is the relationship between Chlorinating and Timescale. Moreover, in Hawthorne embeds the doctrine of compensation, congruent with transcend mental beliefs; this is a critical argument to augment Hawthorn’s ideas of Transcendentalism. . Web. 19 Feb.. 2015. . Love an essay authored by Ralph Wald Emerson, encompasses his beliefs and ideologies about the parameters of love. He goes on to talk about the Mecca nice and and origins Monolayer 8 of love, focusing primarily on its definition.

He uses examples, like Romeo an d Juliet, to express his views of love and whether some love is real or misled. The love, as expressed by Emerson in his essay, is described at growing and bal singsong in the bosom, before it “so lights up the whole world and all nature with its GE onerous flames”. The wording of the selected quote from is extremely similar to the wording of Hester love in He describes love as deep in the bosom, which can superficially be connected to the usage of ‘bosom’ in the book, but also, more indelibly, thro ugh the expansion Of sympathy and love Of the townspeople toward Hester.

This ideal is necessary rye when solidifying the argument that Hawthorne has inserted Transcendental though through UT The Scarlet Letter . Web. 18 Feb.. 2015. . Self Reliance , an essay by Ralph Wald Emerson, focuses on the deeper implications of the Transcendentalist tenet of self reliance. Emerson talks about specific case where a person must rely on themselves, rather than trust societal norms that have already b en in place. For example, if a ruler is being oppressive and unjust, a person who is subject to t hat ruler must determine, with logic, whether or not they should follow them.

He emphasize s that people should exercise free will and determine what is just or unjust with logic and common sense. When looking at through the lens of , the self determination of Hester Prone is of the same ideology as that of Emerson. S he embraces the scarlet letter and relies on herself to decide whether or not she will be oppress deed by it. And Monolayer 9 through this, Emerson draws parallels to the ideas that Hawthorne implants in The Scarlet Letter . This is one of the principal arguments of this paper. Riskier, John. “Hawthorne. The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes 16. 16 (1918): 1631. Print. John Riskier, a distinguished professor from Columbia University, directly real Hawthorne to Transcendentalism. He establishes examples of of Transcend entails in Hawthorn’s writing. He is quoted in saying “The Romances of Hawthorne can hardly be s formed”. Here he ascribes the genius where Hawthorn’s ideals have originated: Transcendent Allis. He also goes on to cite specific places in Hawthorn’s writing where Hawthorne intertwines his views on Transcendentalism.

The connection between Hawthorn’s and Transcendentalism is the baseline of this paper. The author of this paper enhances its rhetorical effects venues by citing such a renowned professor from Columbia University. However, name isn’t eve retrying, and must be backed up with sufficient analysis in order to maximize its persuasive news. All in all, Arsine’s analysis of Hawthorn’s writing works to examine their embedded try incandescent ideologies is the basis of this research paper. Kier, Kay. “Puritans. Notre Dame DEED . Notre Dame, n. D. Web. 15 Feb.. 2015. Monolayer 10 Kay Kier, a professor at the University of Notre Dame, is extremely knowledge about the Puritans. This essay focuses on the specifics of Puritan life and delve sees into some of their ideologies. She goes further to examine their political systems and how t hey are extremely influenced by the fervent belief of predestination.