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Theme of Adultery

  • Date Submitted: 03/16/2010 07:27 PM
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The Theme of Adultery

The theme of adultery has been used in a wide range of literature through the ages. The fact of adultery has been a part of the human existence for as long as there has been marriage, so this is hardly surprising.   As a theme it brings intense emotions into the foreground, and has consequences for all concerned.   It also automatically brings its own conflict, between the people concerned and between sexual desires and a sense of loyalty.
The novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne was an objective description of the life of Hester Prynne, an adulterer. The novel does not go into specific details of the thoughts of the woman except to describe the tragic nature of her character. Tragedy faces the fact that not everything in life ends happily. Therefore, tragedy raises questions about morality; what is considered right or wrong, the meaning of human existence, and the control human beings have over their own actions. Hester is a person that has lead a very tough life for which she, herself is to blame.
Hester Prynne was accused of a great sin. With almost no exceptions, the ridged townswomen are unhappy with the mildness of her punishment. Throughout the Scarlet Letter, she faces humiliation by the other people of Boston, but never loses her sense of pride. Hester Prynne suffers enormously from the shame of her public disgrace and from the isolation of her punishment; however, she retains her self-respect and survives her punishment with dignity, grace, and ever-growing strength of character.
Hester’s pride is what keeps her from losing all that she holds dear; therefore, it can be said that her tragic flaw is her excessive pride. Throughout many years of her life, the people of her town considered Hester an outcast. Her daughter feels these repercussions, Pearl, as well, because she has no friends. Throughout the book, Pearl went through many things, even name-calling and rock throwing.   Pearls behavior could be described as...


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