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Feminist Perceptive On The Scarlet Letter

930 words - 4 pages

The Scarlet Letter: The Feminist Approach
The Scarlet Letter tells the story of a woman labeled by the Puritan society due to her actions and vows of silence to not explain herself.When looking at the feminist approach to literature, the reader must know the three premises and principles. First, language, institutions, social power structures have impacted throughout history reflected particular interest. Second, woman have always resisted or subvert, and at the last but now least, patriarchal dominance and feminine subversion is evident in literary and cultural text.
In Bentuck's analysis of The Scarlet Letter, she uses the statement “ Hester Prynne, however, subverts the Puritan- ...view middle of the document...

400).” Benstuck is introducing the idea that woman were typically confined to the male, which in any society is not right. To view Benstuck's analysis in a biological perspective she states, “Because reproduction of the species takes through the woman's body, she is seen closer to “nature”, while man is the agent of society and culture, which he creates through symbolic representation of the natural environment.
The Scarlet Letter has “ double logic” as described by Benstuck. The “ A” reinforces with what Puritans wanted, but the “A”also subverts. The Puritans viewed the letter “A” to stand for adulteress, but throughout the story the letter was never given a direct meaning. The Puritans also marked her with the letter “ A” to make her a one dimensional figure of society. “ By not assigning the A to a single word, that would inscribe a transcendent meaning.(pg.399)” Hawthorne leave this meaning of the letter open to the readers own imagination, however , with what the society thought that could interfere with the reader's interpretation of the letter. “ Some members of the Puritan community interpret it to mean “able” or “angel”.(pg.399)” Most including Benstuck, can infer that those of the Puritan society that thought the letter had positive meaning where most likely females with a feminist mindset.
Looking into Benstuck's analysis, there should be no question that this analysis falls in the the the school of feminist criticism. She speaks strong on how society views women and how equality between men and women are different. She uses Hester's choice to go against the norms as a foundation to further explain how women's choices were judged throughout society. She not only speaks of Hester, Benstuck brings pearl into the picture. “ If Pearl belongs to the devil, then it is her mother's soul that is in danger, if the daughter belongs to God, then the mother's sinful presence in her life is...

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