Symbolism of Plants in "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Symbolism of Plants in “The Scarlet Letter” by Nathaniel Hawthorne
IMPORTANT: Please assign this order to a writer who has preferably already read this novel, because time is limited. There is a strict 4 day deadline and I absolutely cannot extend the deadline beyond the due date because this is the final paper of the semester and the class ends on the day of the deadline. Please also assign this order to a writer who is skilled in writing a critical/analytical English literature paper and who has a strong grasp of the English language. Thank you.

Discuss how Hawthorne frequently uses plants, trees, and the forest, as symbols of wildness and equates (or relates) that wildness with sinfulness and darkness. Particularly discuss Hawthorne’s references to wild rose bushes as a symbol for the girl Pearl’s wildness, supposedly inherited from her mother’s sinfulness.

Hawthorne uses plants and nature as a symbol for wildness and lust in a person. The contrast between civilization (the puritan settlement) and wilderness (the forest) symbolizes the contrast between the disciplined puritan societal norms and the wildness (or sinfulness) of true human nature.

In this puritan society, if a person embraces their nature, as in love and sex outside of the accepted and restrictive expectations of the community, they are punished for sin (as Hester was when pursuing an affair outside of her loveless marriage.) The Puritan community sees these things as dark and evil, and that is how they view the forest, the wilderness — wild and dark and sinful. This symbolizes the community seeing human nature (particularly sex) as wild and dark and sinful. The wild rose symbolizes the wildness of the child Pearl.

These are unorganized thoughts, I am attempting to give you a foundation on which to write this paper. Please organize these concepts into a developed thesis and argument and complete a 1750 word paper on the subject.

Other instructions:
In class we chose passages from the novel which we must include in our paper and wrote some basic thoughts. Below I am copying to you the contents of my in class worksheet and the selected quotes. Please include the following quotes in the paper and comment on them. I have included my comments in parentheses to guide your thoughts and your writing. You can use some of my words in the analysis, or change them and pursue other thoughts, but these quotes must be included in the paper in some way:

–Find a quote or two about the wild rose bush which symbolizes Pearl’s wildness. (I don’t remember where in the book this was.)

–page 84 (last page4 of chapter VII) – take quotes from here. There are references to the grass and shrubbery and rose bushes in the garden.

–page 136 (last paragraph of chapter XIV), Roger Chillingworth says: “By thy step awry, thou didst plant the germ of evil; but, since that moment, it has all been dark necessity.” (by your sin you planted a seed of evil — plant images used to illustrate wildness and evil) “…Let the black flower blossom as it may!”

–Use quotes from chapter XVI “A Forest Walk”

–page 143: (chapter XVI, paragraph 3) “The road…” (a symbol of civilization imposing order on the wild) “It straggled onward into the mystery of the primeval forest.” (Primeval — here we see the contrast between wildness and civilization, symbolic of the contrast between sin and goodness/holiness or good behavior.) “This hemmed it in so narrowly, and stood so black (darkness of the wilderness) and dense on either side, and disclosed such imperfect glimpses of the sky above, that, to Hester’s mind, it imaged not amiss the moral wilderness in which she had so long been wandering.” (Moral wilderness — here Hawthorne is drawing an obvious comparison between the wildness of nature and the sinfulness of human nature which is contrary to morality. Some morals restrict happiness by restricting human nature.)

Basically, the main point is to take quotes from the book which refer to plants and explain how this imagery expresses the contrast between wildness and civilization, and how this is used as a metaphor for the contrast between sinfulness and morality.




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