What are three points for a research paper on Puritanism in The Scarlet Letter?
I am writing a literary analysis research paper on The Scarlet Letter. It's on the Puritian effects in the book. I have one point completed: hypocrisy. I was thinking about doing the Puritan law for one, however i cannot find enough information about the subject. And I'm still unsure of the third point. The paper is to be turned in on Tuesday.
Some Early Colonial Puritan aspects to consider for your research (And explore the links below:)
1. Public confession / expressions of piety
2. Restraint of passion
3. Obedience to the Law
4. A fragile Christian culture on the edge of the Heathen Wilderness
5. Work Ethic
6. Attaining Salvation
I think it might be interesting to research the role of the minister in the Puritan community. There are several "levels" of minister in "The Scarlet Letter" and it might be interesting to look at them.
What was the relationship between the state officials (the Governor) and the religious leaders of the society. This is particularly interesting when the state is thinking of taking Pearl away from Hester.
What was the relationship between social guilt (Hester) and individual guilt (Dimmesdale). Did all the citizens share Dimmesdale's sense of personal anguish over failings? (You might get some clues from "Young Goodman Brown.")
Whichever topics you select from those suggested, you're going to have to do some extensive research. This is a fairly good place to start for some general background: http://usinfo.state.gov/products/pubs/oal/oaltoc.htm as is http://www.csustan.edu/english/reuben/pal/chap1/1intro.html
The PAL site is a good place to start your research into any American Literature topic ... it's not comprehensive, but it gets you started.