Hawthorne's Theme

Topics: The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Evil Pages: 2 (603 words) Published: August 27, 2008
There are many comparisons and similarities that can be explored between the two works written by Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter and “Rappaccini’s Daughter”. In both works there are instances of malice and good living side by side. There are similarities between Giovanni and the Minister Dimmesdale. Also, Hawthorne uses symbols to represent characters and events in both works. In both works there are instances of malevolence and good living side by side. In “Rappaccini’s Daughter” there is an obvious comparison of personalities between Beatrice and Rappaccini. Their differences are made clear early when Rappaccini is in his garden seeming to disdain the beauty around him and then Beatrice arrives full of life and admiration of the plants around her. Instances of good and bad are found in The Scarlet Letter as well. Dimmesdale living with Chillingworth is the most apparent of the occurrences of malevolence and good being side by side. “His gestures, his gait, his grizzled beard, his slightest and most indifferent acts, the very fashion of his garments, were odious in the clergyman’s sight; a token, implicitly to be relied on, of a deeper antipathy in the breast of the latter than he was willing to acknowledge to himself,” (Hawthorne 96). Dimmesdale is a kind man who unwittingly allows the evil that is Chillingworth to infiltrate his life. There is a great deal of similarity between Dimmesdale and Giovanni. Giovanni is a young man transplanted to a new place with new temptations. The strongest of these temptations is evidently Beatrice, who he is able to see outside the window. Giovanni eventually gives into this temptation and suffers for this mistake by being poisoned by the plants around Beatrice, “Giovanni stepped forth, and, forcing himself through the entanglement of a shrub that wreathed its tendrils over the hidden entrance, stood beneath his own window in the open area of Dr. Rappaccini’s garden,” (Hawthorne 676-677). This event is very similar to...
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