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Themes in The Scarlet Letter

             "Now, good Sir, our Massachusetts magistracy, bethinking themselves that this woman is youthful and fair, and doubtless was strongly tempted to her fall -- and that, moreover, as is most likely, her husband may be at the bottom of the sea;--have not been bold to put in force the extremity of our righteous law against her. The penalty is thereof death" (Hawthorne 56). Different cultural upbringings and different thoughts influence truths to be understood differently. The Puritan belief encompasses that an adulterer must be put to death, yet instead, the ministers did not enforce their laws completely like the way it was meant to be. In a sense they did kill her, not by hanging, but by turning her and her child into social outcasts. .
             ""Thy Heavenly Father sent thee!" answered Hester Prynne. [.] "He did not send me! cried she, positively. "I have no Heavenly Father!'' (88). Pearl wanted to know where she came from and Hester, afraid of her child being becoming evil, tried to convert Pearl so she can be "good" and possibly be accepted by the townspeople. Pearl disagreed with her mother, she thought of it more literally, she knew God did not send her and he was not her actual father. Both can be true; if she was devout, God is her father but in the earthly world He could not be Pearl's actual father. .
             "Individuals in private life, meanwhile, had quite forgiven Hester Prynne for her frailty; nay, more, they had begun to look upon the scarlet letter as the token, not of that one sin, for which she had borne so long and dreary a penance, but of her many good deeds since " (147). The truth of Hester's scarlet letter changed; it no longer represented her weakness and evil, instead, she was now seen as a hardworking woman who is kind and humble. Larger part of the townspeople have forgiven her and acknowledged her repentance and her good deeds since.

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