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Because I could not stop for death

The Scarlet Letter is a novel with much symbolism. Throughout the novel several characters represent other ideas. One of the most complex and misunderstood characters in the novel is Pearl, the daughter of Hester Prynne. Pearl, throughout the story, develops into a dynamic symbol - one that is always changing. Although Pearl changes, she always symbolizes evil. Pearl symbolizes evil in the story by representing Gods punishment of Hesters sin, symbolizing the guilt and the scarlet letter that controls her behavior, and defying Puritan laws by being cheerful and associating with nature. Pearl represents Gods punishment by her mocking and nagging of Hester. Throughout the novel she sometimes seemed to her mother as almost a witch baby (Russell 104). She is a baffling mixture of strong emotions with a fierce temper and a capacity for evil. With Pearl, Hesters life became one of constant nagging, and no joy. The child could not be made amenable to rules. Hester even remarks to herself: Oh Father in heaven - if thou art still my father - what is this being which I have brought into the world!" And Pearl overhearing the ejaculation, or aware, through some more subtile channel, of those throbs of anguish, were turn her vivid and beautiful little face upon her mother, smile with sprite-like intellegence, andresume her play (Hawthorne 1059). Pearl would harass her mother over the scarlet A she wore. In time, Hester was subjected to so much ridicule from Pearl and others that she was forced into seclusion. Pearl represents the sins of both Hester and Dimmesdale. Pearl is said to be the direct consequence of sin (Pekham 108). Their sins include lying to the people about the affair that led to Pearl. Hester realizes what Pearl represents when she does not hold Pearl up in front of the A. She carries the child around because it is a direct reflection of her sin. Hester is, wisely judging that one token of her shame would but poorly serve to hide a...

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