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The Use of Color in The Scarlet Letter Essays

Assignment id 1003040
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Assignment type Essay
Words 3209
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Throughout history, colors have been used to symbolize various meanings based on associations with culture, history, politics, and faith. In The Scarlet Letter, the writer, Nathaniel Hawthorne uses symbolism through colours like red, black and white in the form of sun, to reflect emotions and ideologies of both Hester and the people around her. Nathaniel Hawthorne uses the color red greatly throughout The Scarlet Letter to show its importance of symbolism from the emotions of sin and passion that it represents. The very first example in The Scarlet Letter is the red rose that is growing by the prison door (2), which represents Hester's pride and fire. This rose is developing a place that is not too fitting, which is identical to Hester's fire in that she doesn't fit in the Puritan society. Another illustration of how red is used to signify Hester's fire occurs after when there is sunlight passing through a red window at the governor's house, which subsequently spreads red light throughout the room. This represents Hester's passion as it spreads throughout the Puritan society. Also in The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne uses the color red to symbolize Hester's sin, which is continually being shown by the scarlet letter "A". Hester's sin through the scarlet letter is something that she has to continually deal with and that she can't escape. Hester's daughter Pearl, who's the product of Hester's sin, is often seen to be dressed in red clothes and is also called names like " Ruby", "Red Rose", and "Coral" by her mother (61). The symbolism of the color red in The Scarlet Letter is portrayed as the most important of all, as it's what the entire novel is based upon through the scarlet letter that Hester is forced to wear. Th...

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