Comparing the Crucible and the Scarlet Letter Essay

1068 Words Sep 22nd, 1999 5 Pages
The Puritans had a heavily important part in the formation of early America, as well as a religion that influenced our early American society. This society has been the target which many authors have picked to set their novels in. The topic of Puritan life contains a broad list of aspects that can be easily compared to one another in several different books. Two selections that go into detail about some of the different aspects of the Puritan people are The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, and The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne. These two particular writers who wrote of Puritan times conveyed, in their text, the similarities of religion, punishment, and adultery in the Puritan community of 17th century.
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<br>Briefly, The Crucible
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This strong following of Puritan religion is conveyed in both novels and mentioned throughout.
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<br>As law is in most communities today, there is no doubt that religion was put on one of the highest pedestals of the Puritan community. Due to the fact that religion was followed so avidly, those who went and sinned against it were faced and subject to harsh punishments.
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<br>… as befitted a people amongst whom religion and law were almost identical, and in whose character both were so thoroughly interfused, that the mildest and the severest acts of public discipline were alike made venerable and awful. (Hawthorne 35)
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<br>Both novels chose to convey this aspect because of its importance in the society.
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<br>Punishment may come in many forms and degrees. Sometimes it is difficult to find the right punishment to fit the crime, however it is needed to keep a group of people from absolute chaos. In The Crucible, those who are charged of practicing witchcraft and being "seen with the devil" are given a chance to redeem themselves by confessing, even if they are innocent. If the accused refuse to confess, their punishment is death, and they are sentenced death by being hung. Hester Prynne was punished by being condemned to wear the scarlet-colored "A" on her chest, reminding everyone in the community, as well as her own self, of the sin that she had committed. Also, Hester was ordered to stand upon the scaffold with Pearl for the whole public to

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