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The Scarlet Letter. CHAPTER NOTES 11-13 ADAPTED FROM: Guelcher , William: THE SCARLET LETTER: STRATEGIES IN TEACHING: Idea Works Inc., Eagan Minnesota, 1989. Van Kirk, Susan: HAWTHORNE’S THE SCARLET LETTER : CliffszNotes . IDG Books Worldwide Inc., Forest City, California., 2000.

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the scarlet letter
The Scarlet Letter
  • CHAPTER NOTES 11-13
  • ADAPTED FROM:
  • Guelcher, William: THE SCARLET LETTER: STRATEGIES IN TEACHING: Idea Works Inc., Eagan Minnesota, 1989.
  • Van Kirk, Susan: HAWTHORNE’S THE SCARLET LETTER: CliffszNotes. IDG Books Worldwide Inc., Forest City, California., 2000.
chapters 11 13
CHAPTERS 11-13
  • Chapter 11 captures great irony: Dimmesdale’s consciousness of his personal sin serves to make him a more effective, more compassionate servant of God.
  • Hawthorne describes him as “a subtle, but remorseful hypocrite.”
chapters 11 131
CHAPTERS 11-13
  • Chapter 12: the second of three crucial scaffold scenes.
  • Dimmesdale is clearly on the brink, as evidenced by the near insanity of his scream.
  • It is clear that his subconscious is the source of his agony.
  • Pearl asks him twice to bring the issue into the open: When Dimmesdale refuses a great light comes forth from the skies: a sign calling for the truth that would set them free.
chapters 11 132
Chapters 11-13
  • The chapter has Gothic, supernatural elements: the weird light, the sudden appearance of Chillingworth, the red “A” blazing across the sky.
  • But Hawthorne attributes these to natural occurrences, such as a meteor.
  • It is left up to each character’s – and the reader’s – interpretation as to what really occurred.
chapters 11 133
Chapters 11-13
  • By Chapter 13, four years have passed: Pearl is now seven.
  • Hester’s position and regard in the community has changed: She is given credit for bearing her shame with courage, and her position has risen because of her charity.
  • The scarlet A now stands for “Able.”
  • The price? No friends, no love, no affection. She is the perpetual outsider.
chapters 11 134
Chapters 11-13
  • Hester’s humanity has been stripped from her: Her beauty, warmth, charm, and passion have been replaced by coldness, severity, drabness.
  • Yet, her feelings for Dimmesdale remain. She feels guilty for harboring the secret of Chillingworth’sidentity.
  • She decides to harbor it no longer.