Do you think Hester's betrayal of Roger Prynne (i.e., "Chillingworth") and her rebellion against the Puritans is meant to suggest the early American colonies' rebellion against England? In both situations, there was blame on both sides. In both situations, tensions exploded into conflict and irrevocable consequences. The Scarlet Letter is obviously a story about real characters in complex, life-like situations, but do you think Hawthorne meant it to suggest larger resonances about our country's history?
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Colonial America was a harsh place. Into this harsh landscape came cultures who had harsh rules. The treatment of Hester is a perfect example of this. The people were trying to survive, but they were also pretty unforgiving.
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